Pakistan determined to defeat terror: FO


By Asghar Ali Mubarak

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office Spokesperson Asim Iftikhar has reiterated Pakistan’s resolve to defeat terrorism to ensure peace and stability in the country and the region.
Responding to a question at a weekly news briefing in Islamabad Friday, he however, said terrorism and extremism should not be associated with any region, culture, or civilization. The spokesperson said countering terrorism is a shared objective of Pakistan and its neighbouring countries.
He said we have established a mechanism for dialogue and consultation and we will continue to engage our regional neighbours on this issue. Answering a question, the Spokesperson said Pakistan wants balanced, objective and broad-based relations with major powers, including the United States, China, Russia, and others.
He said Pakistan will continue to pursue mutually beneficial and respectable relations with these countries in a very objective and balanced manner.
Replying to another question, Asim Iftikhar said foolproof security is being provided to Chinese nationals and institutions working in Pakistan.
Yet another question regarding deliberate attempt by India to murder Kashmiri leader Yasin Malik in detenion, the Spokesperson said New Delhi is pursuing a well deployed and deliberate policy of depriving the Kashmiri people of their legitimate and true representatives. He said India is applying various means, including illegal actions, extrajudicial killings and judicial murder to achieve this objective. He, however made it clear that Pakistan will forcefully agitate this matter at all world fora to prevent any unfortunate ending to this.
At the Security Council, the FM forcefully raised the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, the Indian unilateral and illegal actions since 5 August 2019 and the recent ‘delimitation’ exercise terming them an assault not only on the people of Kashmir but an assault on the United Nations, the Security Council and its resolutions and the 4th Geneva Convention – all while the internationally recognized disputed status of Jammu and Kashmir was being undermined and the Muslim majority of the Kashmiris being turned into minority in their own land. The Foreign Minister urged the Security Council to shoulder its responsibility and resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.
The Foreign Minister noted that Pakistan had seen the cost of war up close. We had also witnessed how after decades of conflict, ultimately dialogue and diplomacy were the path to a conclusion.
He appealed to the Council to deploy dialogue and diplomacy in pursuit of peace before and not after the war.
He called for breaking the cycle of conflict that would enable the new generation to unlock its true potential.
While in New York, the Foreign Minister had other important engagements on the sidelines, including meetings with the UN Secretary-General and President of the UN General Assembly. Thesewere opportunities to brief them on issues of our interest especially Jammu and Kashmir and Afghanistan.
Also on the sidelines, the Foreign Minister had bilateral meetings with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, and Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, covering the entire range of bilateral and other issues with the two countries.
In their bilateral meeting, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken reaffirmed the strong determination of Pakistan and the United States to strengthen their broad-based longstanding bilateral relations. They covered the full spectrum of Pakistan-U.S. relations and discussed global and regional situation.
The two sides expressed satisfaction over the ongoing bilateral engagement in the areas of trade and investment, climate, energy, health and education and underlined the need to further reinforce cooperation through dialogue and decisions at a higher level.