February 9, 2017 7:00:38 pm
Hours after Pakistan claimed India is building a ‘secret nuclear city’, the Ministry of External Affairs refuted the neighbouring country’s allegations terming it baseless. In a statement to the media, MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said Pakistan’s claims of India’s secret nuclear city is baseless. “This aims to deflect attention from real issue of terrorism,” he said. “It is high time Pakistan gets the diagnosis of the problem right. It should not remain in denial on the impact of cross border terrorism on the bilateral relationship. Both the problem and its solution are within Pakistan’s reach,” Swarup added.
MEA’s response comes after Pakistan said India has accumulated a stockpile of nuclear weapons which threatens to undermine the strategic balance of power in the region. Pakistan’s Foreign Office (FO) spokesman Nafees Zakaria made the statement at a press briefing where he expressed concern over ‘Indian defence buildup’. Zakaria’s statement read: “India is building a secret nuclear city…It has accumulated a stockpile of nuclear weapons which threatens to undermine the strategic balance of power in the region.”
He also alleged India has been conducting several tests on inter-continental missiles that would ‘disturb the strategic balance in the region.’ He further asked the international community to take note of India’s drive to acquire more deadly weapons and check the rapid expansion of its weapons. Suggesting that India’s efforts to isolate Pakistan has failed, he said India should reciprocate the steps taken by Pakistan for peace.
He said Pakistan remains committed to the principles of peaceful existence with all of its neighbours, including India, adding that Islamabad was open for dialogue. In the statement, he alleged, “Instead of resolving the issues amicably through dialogue, India has adopted a hostile attitude.” He also blamed India of violating the ceasefire agreement repeatedly at the LoC while providing funds to militants to carry out terror activities in Pakistan.
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“Indian belligerence continues to pose threat to the peace in the region, which the international community should take note of,” he said.
(With PTI inputs)
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