Thursday Oct 11, 2018
ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal on Thursday said communications with the United States have increased since the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government assumed office.
During his weekly press briefing the FO spokesperson spoke about the recent visit of US Secretary of State on Afghan reconciliation Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and said, “Pakistan conveyed to the US side that it will take all possible steps in good faith to facilitate the political settlement in Afghanistan."
“It is the responsibility of the US, Afghanistan and all stakeholders to bring Afghan Taliban to the negotiating table and owing to this Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad is also visiting other countries,” he further said.
"Engagements with the US have increased since the assumption of the present government," he added.
Commenting on the recent India-Russia air defense system deal, Dr Faisal said, “Pakistan is against arms race in the region.”
The FO spokesperson said the countries which are providing weapons to India should make sure that their assistance does not disturb balance of power in the region, according to Radio Pakistan.
He pointed out that human and economic development is the stated policy and manifesto of the present government and by indulging in the arms race, the resources cannot be diverted to the development.
The spokesperson, however also made it clear that Pakistani nation and the armed forces are fully ready to respond to any aggression.
Responding to a question regarding the cancellation of a scheduled meeting between Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and his Indian counterpart Sushma Swaraj on the sidelines of the UNGA session last month, Dr Faisal said, “We had requested for a meeting between the two foreign ministers and India backed off despite agreeing at first.”
Further, Dr Faisal said that Pakistan has never shied away from talks with India and is open to discuss all issues, including Jammu and Kashmir, Sir Creek, Siachen and terrorism, according to Radio Pakistan.
Regarding continuing Indian atrocities in occupied Kashmir, Dr Faisal said, “Indian forces are attempting to harass Kashmiris.”
Further, condemning the arrests of Hurriyat leaders, the FO spokesperson said, “Polls in the occupied region are fake and will not benefit India.”
Dr Faisal also spoke about the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and said that the government held talks with Saudi Arabia for investment in the project.
“We also welcome other countries to invest in special economic zones under CPEC,” he added.
The FO spokesperson also clarified, “CPEC projects are not under reviews and Prime Minister Imran Khan’s statement in this regard was misconstrued.”
Responding to a question regarding Pakistan purchasing drones from China, Dr Faisal said, "I have no knowledge regarding this."