Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri

ISLAMABAD, Feb 12 (APP): Describing frequent attacks from the Afghan soil against Pakistan military personnel and civilians as a matter of “grave concern”, Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri on Friday said the issue had been taken up with the Afghan side through the relevant diplomatic and military channels.

“Such unprovoked incidents are against the spirit of mutual cooperation and are viewed with grave concern,” the Foreign Office spokesperson said in response to a question at a weekly briefing.

He said on February 2, 2021, 15 rockets were fired from the Afghan territory inside Pakistan’s Bajaur district by terrorists targeting Pakistan’s security forces and civilians causing material damage.

Again on February 11, the terrorists fired five rockets form inside Afghanistan in Lagharai sector and Sarakai Top Bajaur. A 5-year old child embraced Shahadat (martyrdom), while seven other minors, including a girl, got injured,” he mentioned.

The Foreign Office spokesperson said Pakistan had always underscored the need to use existing mechanisms, including Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Security (APAPPS) to address all issues.

To another question, Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said the Jammu and Kashmir dispute was one of the oldest items on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council, which remained unresolved because of India’s intransigence and unwillingness to implement the relevant UNSC resolutions and its own solemn commitments made to Pakistan, the Kashmiris and the international community.

“We have continued highlighting the legal, human rights, and peace and security dimensions of the dispute at the UN, HRC, OIC, IPU and on many others platforms,” he added.

The spokesperson said the world leaders, international human rights organizations as well as the media had been unanimous in their condemnation of the ongoing Indian atrocities and restrictions by the Indian occupation forces in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

He said the people of IIOJK had suffered more than seven decades of ruthless repression by India. “We continue to sensitize the international community, including the United States, about India’s continued defiance of the international law, UN Charter and the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.”

The Foreign Office spokesperson said,“The international community, including the United States must urge India to stop its consistent and systematic human rights violations in IIOJK – including arbitrary detentions, enforced disappearances, incarceration of political leaders, ongoing efforts to change the demographic structure of the occupied territory, extrajudicial killings of Kashmiris in fake “encounters”, and staged cordon-and-search operations — and take genuine steps to resolve the dispute in a peaceful manner in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions.”

Responding to a question, Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said Prime Minister Imran Khan, on the invitation of his Sri Lankan counterpart, would be undertaking an official visit to Sri Lanka later this month.

The Foreign Office spokesperson, earlier in his opening statement, said the 7th edition of multinational maritime exercise ‘Aman 2021’ being held in Pakistan (North Arabian Sea) from February 11 to 16 was aimed at collectively working against human trafficking, smuggling, and terrorism in the region.

He said with over 45 countries participating, the exercise would help foster shared vision for peace and prosperity in the Western Indian Ocean Region.

Significance of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and Gwadar port would also be highlighted during the course of exercise, the spokesperson added.