Record of the Press Briefing by Spokesperson on 25th June 2015

Islamabad, June 25, 2015 (PPI-OT):Opening Remarks

I have been asked a question regarding the recent Statement of Indian Ministry of External Affairs and media leaks that China has blocked India’s attempts in a UN Sanctions Committee against Pakistan.

I wish to respond to this. The statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs of India as well as the media reports on the matter are most unfortunate and misleading, and an attempt to politicize a purely technical issue at the UN Security Council 1267 Sanctions Committee.

The overall aim of the 1267 sanctions regime is to address the threat posed by Al Qaida. Pakistan is fully complying with its international obligations with regard to implementation of these sanctions.

Pakistan’s numerous efforts including past as well as ongoing extensive law enforcement operations are a major factor in weakening Al Qaida in the region. No other country can match this level of contribution, cooperation and sacrifice towards the objective of the Security Council sanctions.

The UN Security Council 1267 Sanctions Committee oversees the implementation of the 1267 sanctions regime. The Committee is supported in its work by Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team (commonly known as Monitoring Team), which has made numerous visits to Pakistan over the past several years. The Monitoring Team most recently visited Pakistan in January 2015 and issued a very positive report on Pakistan’s numerous measures towards implementation of the 1267 sanctions regime.

India has been making attempts to politicize the work of this technical body of the UN Security Council by making unfounded allegations about Pakistan’s non-compliance with the UN sanctions.

A recent complaint by India was discussed in one of the regular meetings of the Sanctions Committee on purely technical grounds and the Committee decided not to take any action on the Indian allegations.

Pakistan, therefore, rejects any insinuations and politically motivated moves and attempts to question its commitment to the UN Security Council’s decisions. In fact Pakistan supports and respects decisions of the Security Council.

India, on the other hand, as you are aware, is in violation of various resolutions of the Security Council, particularly on Jammu and Kashmir dispute.

The Floor is open for Questions

Question

A recent BBC report has alleged that India has been providing funds to a Pakistan political party, MQM. How does Pakistan see this? (Khawaja Nayyar Iqbal- Kashmir Post)

Answer

We have taken note of the media reports. Our concerned authorities are looking into the matter.

However, in general, let me say that interference in internal affairs of any country is a violation of the principles of the UN Charter. It is also against the norms of interstate relations and conduct. I wish to underscore that peace, security and stability of our region depends on peace, security and stability of the countries comprising the region. Pakistan fully understands and appreciates this. We, therefore, are committed to a policy of good neighbourly relations. We hope India would partner with Pakistan in this mission.

Question

Yesterday, Afghan Intelligence Agency blamed Pakistan for planning the recent attack on its Parliament and said that the mastermind of that attack was an ISI official. What do you say on this fresh blame game from Kabul? (Mudassir Hussain- Khyber News)

Answer

We reject these allegations. Such allegations have been levelled against ISI and its officials in the past as well. Pakistan is a well-wisher of Afghanistan. We are committed to our relations with Afghanistan. Both sides have been interacting at the highest level. We have said in the past and I wish to reiterate that enemies of Afghanistan are enemies of Pakistan. One of the principles of our relations with Afghanistan is that we will not allow our soil to be used against each other.

Question

Are you aware of any new regulations regarding polio vaccination put in place by Qatar for Pakistanis travelling to Qatar for the first time or those who are resident there? (Waqas Rafique- Capital TV)

Answer

I believe you are referring to a recent incident in which Pakistani passengers were kept at Doha airport because they did not have polio vaccination certificates. Qatar has recently introduced these regulations vis-a-vis several countries including Pakistan. With the intervention of our Embassy in Doha and cooperation of concerned authorities of Qatar, all Pakistanis were allowed to enter Doha. The Embassy has also informed all concerned authorities that passengers travelling to Qatar should have polio vaccination certificates.

Question

There was a report yesterday in Dawn that the British Government’s Communication Headquarters has gained access to Pakistan’s internet system. Would you like to comment on this? If this is true, what would be its effect on Pakistan-UK relations? (Saima Shabbir- Al Jazeera TV)

Answer

We have taken note of the media reports and our concerned authorities are looking into the matter. It is not appropriate for me to comment on media reports right away as they could be speculative.

Question

You have very rightly said that the concerned Ministries are looking into the matter. Since the soil of a friendly country i.e. UK is being used against Pakistan then I believe your Ministry is also one of the concerned Ministries. Will your Ministry take up this issue with the UK Government? (Shaukat Paracha- Aaj TV)

Answer

I would reiterate what I said earlier. We will first have to look into these reports and examine them.

Question

Pakistan and Afghanistan have been in close cooperation in recent months. How do you see the latest allegations from the Afghan side particularly after the attack on Afghan Parliament? Do you think this will hamper the efforts being made by both countries to eliminate terrorism from the region? How is Pakistan helping Afghanistan for the upcoming talks expected to take place at the end of this month? (Ishtiaq-Voice of America)

Answer

Let me reiterate that we are committed to our relations with Afghanistan. You must have noted that, as soon as the terrorist attack took place on the Afghan Parliament, Pakistan strongly condemned it at three levels-Prime Minister, Speaker of the National Assembly and Foreign Office. That reflected the sentiments of the people and the Government of Pakistan on the cowardly terrorist attack.

We are cooperating with Afghanistan on counter-terrorism and we have agreed to take coordinated actions in this regard. Terrorist attacks have taken place in Pakistan as well but our cooperation with Afghanistan has continued as it is in the interest of the peoples of the two countries.

Pakistan will continue to facilitate an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process.

Question

During the previous briefing you told us that Pakistan will be raising the issue of Indian Prime Minister’s statement in Bangladesh at international fora. At which fora has this issue been raised until now? (Zarghoon Shah- Geo TV)

Answer

I would reiterate what I said last time that we would take all measures that are necessary to protect our national interest.

Question

Our defence analyst Mr. Zaid Hamid has reportedly been arrested in Saudi Arabia. Can you confirm his arrest? And secondly what type of charges and accusations are against him? If it is true, what Pakistan will do to secure his release? (Syed Mohsin Raza- Such TV)

Answer

Our Embassy in Riyadh has informed us that Mr. Zaid Hamid was arrested about two weeks ago. Since then, the Embassy has been working with the local authorities to get consular access. Due to the efforts of the Embassy, his wife was able to talk to him two days ago (23 June). Again, due to the efforts of the Embassy, his wife will be able to meet with him on 30 June.

Question

Last week, some Pakistani fishermen were released from Indian jails. A father and his son were among the detainees. The father has been released but his eight year old son Muhammad Hussain is still in jail in India. What measures have been taken by the Foreign Office for his release? (Khalid- Express TV)

Answer

As soon as we came to know about the matter, we contacted our High Commission in New Delhi, which is trying to ascertain details. We will share the details with you once we have them.

Question

Do you have any information about the talks between Afghan Government and Taliban which will take place later this month as revealed by the Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, Mr. Sartaj Aziz?(Shahid-ur-Rehman-Kyodo News)

Answer

The Adviser said that Pakistan had facilitated the first meeting. The details of the second meeting are being discussed by the Afghans themselves. However, as before, Pakistan will facilitate the meeting.

Question

Is there any indication from India on the diplomatic level that they want to start the dialogue process again? (Fakhar-ur-Rehman- Dunya TV)

Answer

Discussion on this issue took place during the visit of Indian Foreign Secretary to Pakistan in March 2015. However, we have not received any indication for resumption of the dialogue process from India.

Question

Recently, the Home Minister of Punjab, Shuja Khanzada, in a statement said that Cricket Team of Zimbabwe which visited Pakistan was threatened by Indian Intelligence Agency, RAW. What is the response of Pakistan on it? (Khawaja Nayyar Iqbal- Kashmir Post)

Answer

As a matter of policy, we do not comment on statements made by ministers.

Question

According to media reports, India is constructing a very strong wall behind the fence on the Line of Control in Jammu area. Do you think that this wall should be constructed as Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed territory and demarcation of a disputed area is a violation of the UN Resolutions? (Zarghoon Shah- Geo TV)

Answer

Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed territory. There are UN Security Council Resolutions on it. Under the Resolutions, no side is allowed to take any measures that would alter the situation on the ground.

For more information, contact:
Mr. Aizaz Ahmad Ch
Spokesman
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Government of Pakistan
Tell: +92-51-9205494
Fax: +92-51-9204202
Cell: +92-336-5644459
Website: www.mofa.gov.pk