Just a day after Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari was rebuked by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar at the SCO Foreign Ministers meeting, China and Pakistan mentioned Kashmir in their joint statement.
The joint statement was issued after the fourth round of the Pakistan-China Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue led by Bilawal and Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang.
“Both sides underscored the importance of maintaining peace and stability in South Asia, and the need for resolution of all outstanding disputes. The Pakistani side briefed the Chinese side on the latest developments of the situation in Jammu and Kashmir,” read the Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs press release.
However, the Chinese side reiterated that the Kashmir dispute was left over from history between India and Pakistan and should be properly and peacefully resolved in accordance with the UN Charter, relevant Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements.
“Both sides opposed any unilateral actions that further complicate the already volatile situation,” added the release.
This comes after Jaishankar slammed Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s “weaponising terrorism” remarks.
“Victims of terrorism do not sit together with perpetrators of terrorism to discuss terrorism. Victims of terrorism defend themselves, counter acts of terrorism, they call it out, they legitimise it and that is exactly what is happening. To come here and preach these hypocritical words as though we are on the same boat,” he said while addressing a press conference by the Presidency after SCO Council of Foreign Ministers.
He was answering questions on India-Pakistan ties including a question from a Pakistani journalist.
Answering a question about the terror incident in Jammu and Kashmir on Friday, where five soldiers lost their lives, Jaishankar said there was a shared feeling of outrage, Jaishankar said, “They are committing acts of terrorism. I don’t want to jump the gun on what happened today but we are all feeling equally outraged. On this matter, the terrorism matter, I would say that Pakistan’s credibility is depleting faster than even its Forex reserves.”
“As a promoter, justifier and I am sorry to say, spokesperson of a terrorism industry which is the mainstay of Pakistan, his positions were called out and they were countered, including at the SCO meeting,” he said.
India has consistently raised the issue of Pakistan’s continued support to cross-border terrorism and terrorist infiltration. It has said that the people of Jammu and Kashmir have borne the brunt of this terrorism campaign for decades and continue to do so.
He also brushed aside Pakistan’s objections to India hosting G20 tourism working group meeting in Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir in May.
“I don’t think there is a G20 issue to debate with anybody, certainly not with a country which is nothing to do with G20. Jammu and Kashmir was, is, will always be a part of India. The G20 meetings are held in all the Indian states and Union Territories, so it is completely natural that it is held there,” Jaishankar said.