BEIJING: Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday urged the Indian leadership to change obsolete mindset, adopt a realistic approach and come to the negotiating table for people’s well-being as well as the peace and stability in South Asia.
Pakistan and India have no other option but to hold dialogue as both the countries are nuclear powers and they cannot afford war, he said while talking to Pakistani journalists at the end of his three-day visit to China. He observed that millions of people in the two countries were living below the poverty line and asked the Indian leaders to change their old mindset as the world was changing at a very fast pace.
Qureshi said that India was shy of sitting across the negotiating table with Pakistan in view of the forthcoming general elections, but Pakistan could wait and was prepared to engage with the new government after Indian elections. Pakistan, he said, wanted peace but would not compromise on its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
About opening of Kartarpur corridor, he said the world community had acknowledged and appreciated Pakistan’s initiative and now this step was being termed Kartarpur spirit . He criticized Indian leadership for excluding words Muslim or mosque in their condemnation against terror attacks on two mosques in New Zealand. He also lamented the way the Kashmiri students were attacked and expelled from the Indian universities after Pulwama incident and said the minorities were living with complete harmony and without any hatred in Pakistan and Hindu brethren were celebrating Holi festival with complete religious freedom and enthusiasm.
Acknowledging role of China during recent escalations of tension with India and the listing issue at UN Security Council, he said that China had once again proved that it was all-weather and time-tested friend of Pakistan, adding, Our confidence into our strategic partner, has increased manifold.