On Friday, September 28, 2018 Foreign Minister of Pakistan Shah Mehmood Qureshi cited Indian domestic politics the reason behind the cancellation of meeting of Foreign Ministers of two countries and India’s reluctance for peace talks.
Qureshi’s comments came a day after External Affairs Minister of India; Sushma Swaraj left the South Asian Association Regional Cooperation (SAARC) ministerial meeting after delivering her speech and before the speech of Pakistan FM Qureshi.
Sushma Swaraj went to attend her scheduled meetings with Foreign Minister of Japan, Taro Kono and with the Deputy Prime Minister of Syria, Walid al Muallem.
Pakistan FM Qureshi was speaking at the Asia Society, he said, “I could see the immense strain and when she left, she wasn’t even willing to engage with the media. I had no problem, but I could see the pressure, but I could see the political pressure on her, politics, nothing else, politics, domestic politics”.
Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has alleged that #India‘s “domestic political and electoral compulsions” were behind #NewDelhi‘s reluctance to talk to the new govt in #Islamabad https://t.co/5APpFXAUGS
— EconomicTimes (@EconomicTimes) September 29, 2018
He added, “Why are they reluctant? Simply, sir, politics, elections, elections, the scare of the electorate. They have taken the pendulum; they have swung the pendulum to such an extreme, now they are finding it difficult to bring it back. And with elections around the corner and they felt it could boomerang, that’s why they were shy.”
He further added, “Whenever you are ready, our message is loud and clear, Pakistan will never shy away because we want to move on, we want the region to develop. People of Pakistan are clear that extremism has to be reversed, militancy is not what we need. Terrorism has hit us more than anyone else”.
India initially agreed for the meeting between the foreign ministers of two countries on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly in New York, but cancelled the meeting later citing the killing of BSF soldier and “glorifying the terrorist and terrorism” by Pakistan by releasing a series of stamps of a terrorist killed in encounter by Indian forces.