Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Tuesday reached out to Hurriyat Conference leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and spoke to him over the phone to discuss the “Kashmir issue”.
The outreach by the Pakistan minister prompted India to react strongly against the development, with sources in Ministry of External Affairs in Delhi telling reporters that the move reflected the “duplicity” of the Pakistani leadership.
Farooq told Indian Express, “He said, ‘We are very concerned about what is happening in Jammu and Kashmir’. The most important thing he said was that Prime Minister Imran Khan tried his best to reach out to the government of India but unfortunately there was no response… they will reach out to the next government after the elections.”
India reacted sharply against Pakistan’s move and stated that the incident showcased the apparent divisions within the Pakistan government.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, sources in the MEA told Hindustan Times, “Such an attempt by the Pakistan Foreign Minister is a regressive step and is contrary to the overall perception, which the Pakistan leadership is trying to create. It reflects duplicity in the Pakistani leadership’s approach.”
After taking charge as Pakistan PM, Imran Khan has been saying that he wants to improve ties with India and that both sides should hold talks to resolve outstanding issues. India has been maintaining that Pakistan has to stop cross-border terrorism for any meaningful engagement.