No dialogue with India till review of Aug 5, 2019 unilateral actions: Bilawal

Bilawal declares May 14 as historic day for Pakistan, democracy

ISLAMABAD, May 5 (APP):Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Friday, reiterating Pakistan’s “unchanged” position, said his country could not engage in any meaningful dialogue with India till the latter reviewed its unilateral and illegal actions of August 5, 2019, revoking the special status of Kashmir.

“Unless India reviews the action it took on August 5, 2019 (abrogation of Article 370), Pakistan is not in a position to engage bilaterally with India… As far as Pakistan’s position on bilateral relations with India or any meaningful engagement or dialogue with my Indian counterpart, our position remains unchanged,” the foreign minister said in an interview with India Today.

Bilawal, who was in India on a two-day visit to attend the meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s Council of Foreign Ministers held in Goa, said Pakistan wanted to combat the menace of terrorism because it had caused the largest number of casualties among any other SCO countries.

“Pakistan wants to quell terrorism not because India said it or the Indian government said so, but because we want to end this menace.

“Pakistan has suffered the most. I myself am a victim of terrorism, so Pakistan and myself are wholly committed to combating this menace,” he reiterated.

To a question, the foreign minister said Pakistan was willing to engage any Indian concerns but India would also have to address Pakistan’s concerns.

“India will have to explain what Kulbhushan Jadhav – a state actor, a navy commander – was doing in Pakistan, carrying out terrorist attacks on Pakistani soil. Does that not come under cross-border terrorism?” he asked.

He said the victims of the 2007 Samjhauta Express bombing, which had killed around 70 people, mostly Pakistanis, had yet to see any justice.

To a question, he said the trial on the Mumbai attacks was facing delay because India had not been producing witnesses as a legal requirement.

By Ishtiaq Rao

Ishtiaq Ahmed is a Sr. Reporter who reports on Prime Minister, President, Foreign Office, and special assignments. Backed by 20-year experience, he has written for local and foreign newspapers. Reach out at 03335293238/ X: ishtiaqrao

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