Kashmir dispute a primary obstacle to peace, stability in the region: Pakistan

Srinagar

After US president Donald Trump alleged Pakistan of providing support to ‘terrorists’, Pakistan’s foreign office on Tuesday said the “non-resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute remains the primary obstacle to peace and stability in the region.” It also denied that Pakistan provides safe havens to ‘terrorists’.

Earlier on Tuesday, Trump announced his new policy for Afghanistan and the larger South Asian region, calling on India to step up its role in the war-torn country and warned Pakistan against providing safe havens to ‘terrorist groups’.

The Pakistan foreign office said the new US strategy in Afghanistan and South Asia was discussed at a Cabinet meeting held late last night and Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi will take up the issue during a National Security Committee meeting on August 24 for a comprehensive policy response.

In its initial response, it expressed disappointment over the accusations.

“No country in the world has suffered more than Pakistan from the scourge of terrorism, often perpetrated from outside our borders,” it said.

“It is, therefore disappointing that the US policy statement ignores the enormous sacrifices rendered by the Pakistani nation in this effort.”

“Instead of relying on the false narrative of safe havens, the US needs to work with Pakistan to eradicate terrorism,” the foreign office said.

It said the threat to peace and security “cannot be isolated from the complex interplay of geopolitics, continued existence of festering disputes and pursuit of hegemonic policies”, reiterating that there was no exclusive military solution to the crisis in Afghanistan.

Pakistan supports an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned politically negotiated solution for sustainable peace in Afghanistan, it said.

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