India summons Pak High Commissioner after FM Qureshi’s call to Mirwaiz

After Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi called Hurriyat (M) Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, India summoned Pak High Commissioner Sohail Mahmood to raise objections.

However, Islamabad, in a statement, justified its engagement with Hurriyat Conference leader, with the Pakistan Foreign Ministry saying it “categorically rejects the objections raised by India”.

“We would like to reiterate that Kashmir is an outstanding dispute between India and Pakistan, and acknowledged as such through UN Security Council resolutions as well as numerous Pakistan-India documents including the Simla Agreement and Lahore Declaration,” the ministry said in a statement. “The Kashmir issue remains on the agenda of the UN Security Council,” the statement said.

Calling India’s objections an “outright travesty”, Pakistan said it was “committed to extending its political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of occupied (sic) Jammu & Kashmir”.

“The leadership in Pakistan has always been communicating with the Kashmiri leadership. This is not anything new,” it added.

On Tuesday, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi rang up Hurriyat (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and briefed him about the efforts being made by his country to highlight the ‘human rights violations committed in Kashmir by the Indian forces’.

According to a statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, Qureshi briefed Mirwaiz on the efforts of the government of Pakistan to highlight the “gross human rights violations being perpetrated by the Indian forces in Jammu and Kashmir.”

The reaction came after Pakistan High Commissioner Mahmood was called by South Block, which houses India’s Ministry of External Affairs, way past normal working hours, at 10.30 pm. Mahmood was summoned by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale.

“India made it clear that Jammu & Kashmir is an integral part of India and Pakistan has no business to interfere in the internal affairs of India,” the Ministry of External Affairs said in a press release issued after the meeting.

According to the statement, Gokhale told the envoy that the phone call to Mirwaiz was “deplorable” and “violated all norms for the conduct of international relations even by Pakistan’s own standards”.

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