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Thursday, August 18, 2022

China-Pak joint statement: Islamabad says ‘strong evidence India trying to stoke unrest in Balochistan, will support just cause of Kashmiris’

Pakistan on Thursday rejected India’s “unwarranted” objections to the Pakistan-China Joint Statement which was issued at the end of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China this week.

India on Wednesday had rejected the references to Jammu and Kashmir and an economic corridor passing through Pakistan-administered Kashmir made in a China-Pakistan joint statement, claiming that the region will” always remain integral and inalienable parts of India.

Regarding the reference to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in the statement, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said India has consistently conveyed its concerns to China and Pakistan on the projects.

India has been severely critical of the CPEC as the USD 60 billion corridor passes through Pak.

In a statement on Thursday, the Foreign Office said, “Pakistan categorically rejects the unwarranted and preposterous comments made by the Spokesperson of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs on the Pakistan-China Joint Statement.”

The FO said that there is “strong evidence” of Indian involvement in recent attempts to stir up unrest in Balochistan by supporting anti-state elements.

India has rejected Pakistan’s charges in the past, saying it was Islamabad’s bid to deflect international attention from its role as the epicenter of regional instability and a safe haven for militants.

Balochistan, bordering Iran and Afghanistan, is home to a long-running insurgency. Baloch insurgent groups have carried out several attacks targeting the CPEC projects in the region in recent times.

The FO also said that Pakistan will continue to extend all possible support to the Kashmiris “in their just struggle.”

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