ISLAMABAD: Pakistan strongly reacted on Saturday to Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar’s ‘provocative’ statement saying the country was fully capable to defend itself and thwart any aggression.
According to a report published on The Times of India website on Friday, Parrikar warned Pakistan of a “strong response” after alleging it for aiding and abetting cross-border terrorism.
“I feel that there has to be some strong response which will once and for all reduce these blatant attempts. It’s an open secret that they (militants) came from Pakistan,” said the newly sworn-in defence minister who has replaced Arun Jaitley – the current finance minister of India.
Jaitley was also criticised by Pakistan for issuing a statement in which he threatened the neighbouring country to choose between Indian government and Kashmiri separatist leaders.
“Allegations levelled against Pakistan in such statements by Indian Ministers are unfounded and provocative,” Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam said in a statement issued here today.
She said such statements were not conducive to peace in the region. The spokesperson warned that there must not be any miscalculation about Pakistan’s resolve to defend itself and thwart any aggression.
Parrikar’s statement came following his first official visit to Indian-held Kashmir to review the security situation there.
India had called off foreign secretary-level talks with Pakistan in August after the Pakistani envoy met Kashmiri separatists on the eve of the dialogue.