Pakistan has said the Indo-US agreements signed during President Barack Obama’s visit to New Delhi would spark an arms race in South Asia, days after the US and India reached a nuclear trade breakthrough and agreed to extend defence cooperation for another ten year.
“Pakistan is examining the imbalance (likely to be caused by these agreements) and the possible ways and means for redressing it,” National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz said on Thursday at a seminar in Islamabad organised by think- tank Strategic Vision Institute on implications of Obama’s visit to India.
Aziz called on the US and other members of the international community to support the objective of regional balance and strategic stability.
“Pakistan’s key concern is the paramount importance of strategic stability in South Asia,” he said. The US, he said, ignored concerns of the Pakistan government though Pakistan had “forcefully” conveyed to the US even before President Obama’s second visit to India.
The US was asked to “take a comprehensive view of strategic imbalance in South Asia and avoid any steps that may jeopardise the region’s strategic stability”, he said.
Aziz alleged that India’s military build-up through large-scale acquisition of arms from US and Russia; expansion of fissile material production facilities; and quest for advanced technology for missile and related delivery systems would accentuate the already existing conventional and nuclear imbalance in South Asia.
The worsening of the strategic imbalance at a time of the heightened Pak-India tensions, ceasefire violations along the Line of Control and the International Border was extremely worrisome, he claimed.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Aziz had pledged to take all measures to safeguard national interests.