ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said efforts for de-escalation should not be considered weakness.
Addressing the joint session of Parliament, the premier stressed, “All issues should be resolved through dialogue. Despite us opening the Kartarpur corridor, we received no response from India.”
“When the Pulwama attack happened, we were blamed within 30 minutes,” he lamented. “I’m not saying that India has a part to play in India but I asked them to share evidence.”
Lauding the Pakistani media, the premier said, “Indian media created war hysteria. Our media showed solidarity and acted responsibly.”
The premier said, “We had understood that they [India] will do something. India gave us a dossier today, two days after they attacked us.”
“I had said that if India does something then we will respond,” he asserted. PM Imran continued, “India violated the UN Charter.”
PM Imran also said he attempted to hold a telephone call with Indian Prime Minster Narendra Modi last night to tell him we want de-esacalation.
The premier announced, “We have decided to release the captured Indian pilot tomorrow as a peace gesture.”
Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif also addressed the session.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan tabled the motion to discuss the prevailing prevailing situation between Pakistan and India as the session began.
Earlier, PM Imran chaired a meeting of the federal cabinet and said Pakistan is ready for talks with India on all issues including terrorism. The premier said, “Dialogue is the only way for peace and stability in the region.”
“I had made an offer to India to investigate the Pulwama attack and hold dialogue on bilateral issues,” sources quoted the premier as telling cabinet members. “Pakistan is ready for talks with India on all issues including terrorism,” he added according to the sources.
Pakistan willing to consider returning Indian pilot if it leads to de-escalation: FM Qureshi
Earlier during the day, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi while speaking to sources had said Pakistan was willing to consider returning the Indian pilot if it meant de-escalation of ties between the two countries.
Speaking to sources, the foreign minister said, “I have just received the [Indian] dossier and have not gotten the chance to examine it. We briefed parliamentary leaders last night, there was a meeting of the cabinet. There is the joint session. I will still say that we will see and examine the dossier with an open heart. I wish they [India] would have sent this dossier earlier. They attacked first and then sent the dossier. If they would have sent the dossier first and sought Pakistan’s answer there would be no need for an attack.”
“If there is de-escalation with the return of this [Indian] pilot, Pakistan is willing to consider this. We are ready for all positive engagement,” he added.
The foreign minister further said, “Prime Minister Imran Khan is ready to talk to Narendra Modi on the telephone and ready to extend an invitation of peace. Is Modi ready?”
Asserting that Pakistan has been calling for peace since day one, Qureshi said, “If India wants to talk about terrorism then we are ready.”
“You [India] want to risk regional stability for politics,” he said and added that “it could be the need of politics but history will not forgive you”.
Pakistan’s armed forces on high alert along LoC: ISPR
Pakistan’s armed forces are on high alert along the Line of Control (LoC) and ready for any eventuality, the military’s media wing Inter Services Public Relations said on Thursday.g
Contingents of Pakistan Army are on high alert along the LoC and prepared to deal with any Indian aggression, ISPR said. Pakistan Air Force and Pakistan Navy are also fully alert, it added.
The military’s media wing said, “During the last 48 hours, Indian troops have resorted to increased ceasefire violations in Kotli, Khuiratta and Tatta Pani Sectors along LoC. Pakistan Army troops have been responding effectively.”
“India is continuously violating the ceasefire agreement,” it added.
Trump says received ‘attractive news’, hopeful Pakistan and India will end tensions
US President Donald Trump while addressing a news conference in Hanoi after a meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, opened his remarks by discussing the situation with India and Pakistan. “We have I think reasonably attractive news from Pakistan and India,” he said.
“They have been going at it and we have been involved in trying to have them stop and we have some reasonably decent news hopefully that will be coming to an end. It’s been going on for a long time for decades and decades. There is a lot of dislike unfortunately so we have been in the middle trying to help them both out, see if we can get some organisation and some peace. And I think that is probably going to be happening,” the US president said.
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