Pakistan on Wednesday rejected Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s accusation that the South Asian country is waging a proxy war against India.
In a statement, Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokeswoman Tasnim Aslam termed PM Modi’s comments on terrorism as “baseless rhetoric”.
Aslam said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to India in May for Modi’s swearing-in was in the spirit of wanting to establish good neighbourly relations with India.
The visit “generated a fresh momentum in the bilateral relationship” and “it would be in the larger interest of regional peace that instead of engaging in a blame-game, the two countries should focus on resolving all issues through dialogue and work together to promote friendly and cooperative relations”, she said in a statement.
Modi, while addressing Indian armed forces personnel in Leh on Tuesday, had said Pakistan was indulging in a proxy war killing innocent people in India as it has lost the power to fight a conventional war.
“The neighbouring country has lost the strength to fight a conventional war, but continues to engage in the proxy war of terrorism. Indian armed forces are suffering more casualties from terrorism than from war,” Modi had said.
The spokesperson, while referring to “news reports attributed to Modi repeating the baseless rhetoric against Pakistan regarding terrorism”, recalled that Pakistan has consistently condemned terrorism, in all its forms and manifestations.
She contended that, having lost the lives of 55,000 of its citizens as a result of terrorism, “Pakistan is the biggest victim of the menace”.
“The entire world has, time and again, acknowledged Pakistan’s unprecedented sacrifices, rendered by our valiant armed forces with over 5,000 soldiers having embraced Shahadat (martyrdom). Our armed forces remain ready to defend the country’s borders and thwart any threat of aggression,” the spokesperson stressed.
“The press reports of Indian accusations, at the highest political level, are most unfortunate, especially as the leadership of Pakistan wishes to establish good neighbourly relations with India. Nawaz Sharif’s visit to India in May was in this spirit and generated a fresh momentum in the bilateral relationship.”
“It would be in the larger interest of regional peace that instead of engaging in a blame game, the two countries should focus on resolving all issues through dialogue and work together to promote friendly and cooperative relations.”