November 10, 2017
Airbase in Indian Gujarat part of Cold Start Doctrine: Pakistan
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday once again asked India to “engage in a meaningful dialogue” aimed at agreeing to measures of restraint and military doctrines which are ‘defensive’ in nature rather than seeking to create space for ‘war’.
“India should respond positively to Pakistan’s proposal for a Strategic Restraint Regime that can serve as the basis for enduring peace and stability in the region”, the Foreign Office spokesman told a media briefing at a time when the Modi government is planning to build a new airbase in Gujarat near the Pakistani border.
“The report about Gujrat provides credibility to the fact that India is fast developing the infrastructure and force configurations to operationalise these military doctrines. Subscribing to such offensive doctrines in a nuclearised region exposes irresponsible behaviour”, further warned the spokesman.
Pakistan stressed that the new Indian military airbase and statements by the Indian military leadership have confirmed the existence of the Cold Start Doctrine, which only validates what Pakistan has known all along regarding India’s aggressive designs. “Military doctrines, such as Cold Start and Pro-Active Strategy, envision limited war below the nuclear threshold”, added the spokesman.
Just days after a Pakistani diplomat Nayyar Iqbal Rana was murdered by unknown assailants in Jalalabad, which the Afghan government termed a “terrorist attack”, Islamabad says for a long time there has been a nexus between RAW and terrorist networks inside Afghanistan.
“There are multiple actors active in Afghanistan and friendly relations between our two countries do not go well with certain elements. We are cognizant of such machinations and would not let such elements succeed in their nefarious intentions”, spokesman at the Foreign Office commented while mourning the untimely death of its diplomat.
He pointed to the nexus between RAW and terrorist networks in Afghanistan including, TTP, JUA and other terrorist organizations. The nexus between RAW and TTP has been documented by Indian commentators as well.
“They have been involved in subversive activities inside Pakistan and also working against the national interest of Pakistan in Afghanistan”, he added.
However, the government appears to be satisfied with the steps taken by the Afghan government to look into the murder of Nayyar Iqbal saying that it would be inappropriate to comment about the perpetrators at this juncture. “The Afghan side has expressed its grief over the incident and assured us of their full cooperation. It has also been agreed to keep Pakistan informed about the progress in the investigations”, he added.
The president of Afghanistan has called the prime minister of Pakistan. The Afghan National Security Adviser has also called the NSA of Pakistan. The deputy foreign minister of Afghanistan has sent a message to the foreign secretary.
US Ambassador David Hale also called on Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa in Rawalpindi on Thursday. To a query, the spokesman commented that Pakistan believes that there is no military solution to the Afghan conflict and a political solution is imperative for lasting peace and stability. “It is very important for Afghanistan to be at peace with itself and its neighbours”, he said. He also shrugged aside allegations by the Nato Secretary General that Pakistan was providing safe havens to militants.
“Nato with its world class fighting machine has been inside Afghanistan for decades but has failed miserably to contain militancy, which has resulted in nearly half of the country in the hands of the TTP.
"We completely reject baseless allegations of bases in Pakistan. There are no organized bases of any terrorist organizations anywhere in the country. Such fallacious assertions are counter-productive and detrimental.
"More than 45% of the Afghan territory is ungoverned and uncontrolled. Taliban operate from these areas affecting not only Afghanistan, but also Pakistan. It is in this area that the NATO should focus to ensure end to violence and terrorism in the region”, the spokesman said, while giving friendly advice to the NATO Secretary General.
Pakistan says it expects that the US and Afghanistan may address its concerns about expanding ungoverned spaces inside Afghanistan and the sanctuaries that are being used to launch terrorist attacks inside Pakistan. To a query about the recently-concluded visit of the COAS to Iran, the spokesman said the visit led to useful discussions on strengthening cooperation between the two countries.
“In recent years, bilateral exchanges with Iran at high level and at all other levels have increased considerably. Both the sides are committed to further strengthening bilateral ties, and in the interest of peace and stability in the region, Pakistan has continued to make efforts for unity among the Muslim countries”, responded the spokesman.
“While Switzerland shied away from stopping militants and terrorists from attacking Pakistan in the name of ‘free speech’, Great Britain reacted swiftly when malicious material was used on in its roads against Pakistan.
“Pakistan appreciates the prompt steps taken against such propaganda which impinges the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Pakistan. We are aware of the sinister intentions behind such malicious campaigns. These should not be repeated anywhere”, the spokesman responded to slogans painted on London cabs.
“The Transport for London (TfL) authorities, after taking suitable action for removal of the malicious material, have initiated an inquiry in the matter and assured a disciplinary action against the perpetrators”, added the spokesman.