Dawn.com.pk/Kashmiris are freedom fighters, not separatists: FO

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SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)

Pakistan’s Foreign Office on Thursday strongly reacted to a statement issued by Indian Defence Minister Arun Jaitley and said Kashmiris were freedom fighters and not separatists.

Speaking to media representatives during the weekly briefing in Islamabad, FO spokeswoman Tasnim Aslam said Jaitley’s statement was “unacceptable for Pakistan”.

Jaitley had on Wednesday said that Pakistan must make a “conscious choice of peace” and decide whether it wanted to talk to the Indian government or the Hurriyat leaders.

The spokeswoman added that Pakistan was sincere when it came to a dialogue with India, saying that was necessity for peace in the region.

Referring to the Indian leadership’s statement in condemnation of the Wagah border post attack, Aslam said no condemnation or condolence message had been received through official channels.

She added that US Ambassador Richard Olson had been apprised of Pakistan’s reservations against a report recently issued by the Pentagon.

Aslam said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif would be leaving for Beijing tomorrow prior to a meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC) and would hold talks with the Chinese leadership, including the country’s premier and president.

During the prime minister’s visit, a number of agreements and memoranda of understanding (MoU) will be signed between the two countries, most of them in the field of energy, Aslam added.

The spokeswoman said Afghan President Ashraf Ghani would visit Islamabad this month. However, dates could not yet be announced, she said.

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