Pakistan Alleges India Seeks Another War Over Kashmir
ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN �Pakistan is alleging India is seeking another war by escalating tensions on the de facto Kashmir frontier, cautioning the rival nation against undertaking “any strategic miscalculation.”
The nuclear-armed countries are locked in routine military skirmishes across the Line of Control, or LoC, that separates Pakistani and Indian portions of the disputed Himalayan region.
The recent clashes, harming soldiers and civilians on both sides, have apparently rendered ineffective a 2003 mutual cease-fire truce, plunging bilateral relations to historic lows in recent months.
“We have cautioned India from making any strategic miscalculation. It appears that India is seeking conflict with Pakistan,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nafees Zakaria told a weekly news conference Thursday.
There has been no immediate reaction from New Delhi to Pakistan’s assertions.
Zakaria again accused India of deliberately escalating operations on the Kashmir cease-fire line to divert international attention from rights abuses against locals by Indian troops in their part of the divided territory.
“While we have no desire to escalate the situation, Pakistani armed forces would respond effectively to unprovoked violations,” Zakria said.
India claims its forces are firing at Pakistan army backed militants who try to infiltrate the LoC to fuel unrest in Kashmir, Islamabad rejects the Indian claim.
India and Pakistan have already fought three wars since they gained independence from Britain in 1947. Kashmir was the issue in two of the conflicts and the dispute remains the primary source of regional tension.
Both countries claim the region in its entirety.
The two rival South Asian nations tested their nuclear devices in 1998, raising fears another war could escalate to nuclear exchanges.
Source: Voice of America