Updated: July 25, 2019 9:41:45 pm
Describing Imran Khan’s statement that about 30,000-40,000 “armed people” who fought in Kashmir or Afghanistan were still in Pakistan as “glaring admission”, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Thursday said it is time for Islamabad to take “credible and irreversible action” against terror groups.
“It is a glaring admission by the Pakistani leadership,” MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said at a media briefing. The MEA’s response came a day after the Pakistan Prime Minister admitted that about 30,000-40,000 “armed people”, who have been trained and fought in some part of Afghanistan or Kashmir, were in Pakistan and accused the previous governments of not telling the truth to the US about the militant groups operating in the country.
Weekly Media Briefing by Official Spokesperson (July 25, 2019) https://t.co/JX0vNj9ZbQ
— Raveesh Kumar (@MEAIndia) July 25, 2019
“Until we came into power, the governments did not have the political will, because when you talk about militant groups, we still have about 30,000-40,000 armed people who have been trained and fought in some part of Afghanistan or Kashmir,” Khan had said during his appearance at the US Institute of Peace, a US-Congress funded think-tank, on Tuesday.
India and Afghanistan accuse Pakistan of providing safe haven to the Afghan Taliban, Haqqani Network, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other militant groups, which carry out attacks in two countries.
Kumar also said that Indian authorities are in touch with their Pakistani counterparts to provide consular access to former Indian Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav whose death sentence by a Pakistan military court was suspended by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) last week.
“We expect that full consular access should be granted to Kulbhushan Jadhav at the earliest in full compliance with the ICJ’s judgment. We are in touch with Pakistani authorities in this regard and as and when there is an update, we will let you know,” he said.
Playing down the controversy over US President Donald Trump’s claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked him to mediate on the Kashmir issue, Kumar said it is time to move on. The MEA spokesperson asserted that India’s relationship with US remains very strong.
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