P-5 countries informed Indian aggression may lead to strategic miscalculation

Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry Friday briefed the heads of missions of P-5 countries on continued cease-fire violations by Indian forces and expressed apprehension that the constant Indian aggression may lead to a strategic miscalculation.

According to Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria, the Foreign Secretary briefed the heads of missions of the permanent members of the UN Security Council, namely China, France, Russian Federation, UK and USA, on the continued unprovoked firing and cease-fire violations by the Indian occupation forces on the Line of Control (LoC) and the Working Boundary, especially during the past two months.

He expressed grave concern over the increased frequency and duration of indiscriminate firing and shelling from Indian side, deliberately targeting villages and civilian populated areas, resulting in killing of 26 civilians and injuries to 107, including women and children, in complete disregard to 2003 cease-fire understanding and international law.

The Foreign Secretary deplored the use of artillery in Shahkot and Jura sectors on the LoC on November 09, 2016. He stated that the Indian side resorted to the use of such heavy weaponry after a gap of 13 years. “Pakistan has been compelled to respond but with maximum restraint. The armed forces of Pakistan gave a befitting response,” Chaudhry said.

He expressed apprehension that Indian actions, which constitute a threat to the maintenance of peace and security, may lead to a strategic miscalculation.

While emphasising the important role of the United Nations Military Observers Group (UNMOGIP), which has the mandate for maintaining peace and tranquility at the LoC and the Working Boundary, the Foreign Secretary noted that Pakistan is fully co-operating and providing unfettered access to UNMOGIP. However, India is not co-operative and limits their access, he added.

According to the spokesperson, the representative of the Military Operations Directorate also made a detailed presentation on the existing situation at the LoC and the Working Boundary.

In response, the Heads of Missions assured that they would convey Pakistan’s concern to their respective capitals, the spokesperson said, adding the envoys also underscored the need for restraint, observance of cease-fire and dialogue to resolve issues.

Earlier on Thursday last, the Foreign Secretary also summoned Indian High Commissioner to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and lodged a strong protest of the government of Pakistan over the repeated cease-fire violations and use of heavy weaponry, undermining regional peace and security.

Pakistan and India are accusing each other of the cease-fire violations amid heightening tensions over the situation in Kashmir.

According to the Foreign Office, India has so far committed 222 cease-fire violations out of which 184 have been on the LoC and 38 on the Working Boundary during the current year.

-Business Recorder