War is not an option, say Pakistani envoys WASHINGTON: War is not an option for India and Pakistan, says Islamabad’s US envoy, as a group of visiting Pakistani parliamentarians also underline the need for talks between South Asia’s two nuclear-armed neighbours.
“Going to war is not an option at all. Both countries need economic development and to focus on the welfare of their people,” said Ambassador Jalil Abbas Jilani.
Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed and MNA Shezra Mansab Ali Kharal, visiting the United States to present Pakistan’s views on the Kashmir dispute, also disregarded the suggestion that India and Pakistan were moving towards yet another war.
“There will be no war,” Senator Mushahid Hussain said, adding: “Both sides are fully aware of the consequences of a war between two nuclear-armed nations.”
Ms Kharal said: “Talks are important, not just for Pakistan and India but also for the people of Kashmir. They too deserve to live in peace and with dignity.”
The two lawmakers pointed out that Pakistan and India had already agreed to reduce tensions after their national security advisers spoke over phone last week.
Indian National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and his Pakistani counterpart Nasser Janjua have spoken twice since the Sept 18 militant attack on an Indian military facility in Uri, the lawmakers said.
“They agreed to reduce tensions on the LoC,” Ms Kharal added.
Ambassador Jilani told journalists after an award ceremony on Saturday evening that there’s a need to resolve all bilateral disputes, including the Kashmir issue, through dialogue.
“So war is not an option at all, especially among two nuclear-powered countries. Thinking about war is unimaginable,” he said.
The ambassador urged the United States and other major world powers to encourage India to engage with Pakistan for a peaceful resolution of all disputes, including the core issue of Kashmir.
Mr Jilani, who participated in more than a dozen meetings between US officials and lawmakers and the Pakistani delegation, said the Americans were fully aware of the need for promoting peace in South Asia and were quietly urging India and Pakistan to reduce their tensions.
Ambassador Jilani, who received the “Best Government Infrastructure Strategy” and the “Best Finance Minister in South Asia” awards on behalf of Ishaq Dar, said that like India, Pakistan too was focused on economic development and this was being noticed by the international community as well.
Earlier, at a meeting with Pakistani journalists, Senator Mushahid Hussain and MNA Shezra Kharal said the Americans had maintained “very high-level” contacts with the Indian and Pakistani governments.
And after this week’s meetings with the US officials, “we are convinced that the Modi government will finally resume bilateral talks with Pakistan,” said Senator Hussain.
Ms Kharal warned India not “to stir troubles in Balochistan as India too has fault lines”. She said India had more than 17 separatist movements and if Pakistan wanted, it could have exploited those situations. “But we did not because we regard those as India’s internal affairs. India should also stop interfering in our internal affairs.”
Senator Hussain advised India not to equate Kashmir with Balochistan because Kashmir was an internationally recognised disputed territory while Balochistan was recognised by all, including India, as a part of Pakistan.