Pakistan on Thursday said India’s confrontational attitude may lead to a “strategic miscalculation” and warned of “befitting response to any misadventure” following statements by the Indian Army chief. Indian Army chief General Bipin Rawat last week said that the force was ready to call Pakistan’s “nuclear bluff” and cross the border if the government asked them to.
“Such irresponsible and provocative statements by the Indian Army chief are regrettable and reflect the jingoistic mindset of India, which can further exacerbate the already vitiated environment,” Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal said at the weekly media briefing. He said Pakistan has no desire to escalate the situation and has reacted with maximum restraint.
“The Indian confrontational attitude is a threat to regional peace and security and may lead to a strategic miscalculation. Pakistan is fully capable of giving a befitting response to any misadventure,” Faisal said. “India’s mistaken belief and irresponsible rhetoric are fraught with unforeseen dangers in an already volatile strategic environment,” he said.
He also claimed that the situation on the Line of Control has been deteriorating due to use of heavy weapons by India. “The situation on the LoC and the Working Boundary is deteriorating with each passing day. Heavy weapons, including Mortars, are frequently being used by the Indian forces on the Pakistani side of the LoC and the Working Boundary,” he said. He said that LoC firings were in clear violation of the 2003 ceasefire arrangement
He alleged that India deliberately escalated tensions at the LoC and the Working Boundary in order to try to divert the attention of the international community from Kashmir. Faisal said Pakistan had shared concerns on Kashmir with the international community and was also engaged with the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP).
India maintains that UNMOGIP has outlived its utility and is irrelevant after the Simla Agreement and the consequent establishment of the Line of Control. To a question about reports that Al-Qaida has set up a new branch for its activities in the sub-continent and also appointed an Indian national Asim Umar as its chief, Faisal said it indicated an extension of the AQ network in India and the likelihood of increased Indian recruitment.
He also alleged that India had developed a nexus with militant groups in Afghanistan and was using them to orchestrate terrorist attacks in Pakistan.