Pakistan’s positive outreach to India met with negativity: FM

Vows to remain steadfast to fight against terrorism in all forms

Jalil Abbas Jilani says Pakistan facing big threat of TTP, ISIS-K from Afghan soil.

NEW YORK  -  Caretaker Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani has said Paki­stan’s relations with the Unit­ed States are one of the most consequential of bilateral rela­tionships. Addressing the Asia Society in New York, he said se­curity and defense cooperation remains an important pillar but equal emphasis is laid by both sides to strengthen coopera­tion in non-security areas like trade and investment, climate change, energy, health, agricul­ture, IT and tech sector.

He said relationship now stands de-hyphenated from all other bilateral ties and both sides are focused on tapping the inherent potential of stand­alone bilateral relations.

About Afghanistan, Jalil Ab­bas Jilani said Pakistan has the greatest stake in an Afghani­stan that is at peace within and with its regional and interna­tional partners.

He said Pakistan remains steadfast in its commitment to fight terrorism and extremism.

He said the biggest concern right now for Pakistan is the enhanced terrorist threat from TTP and ISIS-K, and their abili­ty to use Afghan soil for launch­ing attacks on Pakistan. We re­main closely engaged with the Afghan authorities on this is­sue. He said terrorist outfits trying to gain a foothold in Af­ghanistan should be treated as a threat to the neighborhood and entire international com­munity. The foreign minister said Pakistan desires peace­ful and cooperative neighbor­ly ties with India. He said un­fortunately Pakistan positive outreach and peace overtures have been met with negativity.

Jalil Abbas Jilani said In­dia’s illegal actions in Occu­pied Jammu and Kashmir and abhorrent human rights vio­lations of innocent Kashmiris at the hands of Indian securi­ty forces have further deteri­orated relations. Worsening religious extremism in In­dia, especially against Mus­lims, has further complicated the situation. In such a com­plex environment, he said ob­jectives of regional peace and stability call for peaceful con­structive dialogue on all out­standing issues including the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.