External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Wednesday made called out Pakistan for sponsoring terrorism during an interactive session with Frank G. Wisner, a former US ambassador to India at the UN. Jaishankar asserted that while there is terrorism in different parts of the world, Pakistan is that neighbour of India which is consciously and deliberately using terror against India. Calling Pakistan a "challenging neighbour", the MEA stressed that while a country is ready to have a dialogue with their neighbour, how can India talk with a neighbour that is sponsoring terror and then following a policy of implausible deniability.
"You have terrorism in different parts of the world, but there is no part of the world where a country uses it consciously and deliberately as a large scale industry against its neighbour. How do I talk to a country that sponsors terrorism and then follows the policy of implausible deniability?" MEA Jaishankar said.
Launching a scathing attack at Pakistan over trade measures, Jaishankar said, "You have a neighbour who will not trade with you, who is a member of World Trade Organization (WTO) & before that of General Agreement on Tariffs & Trade (GATT) but will not extend Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status even though they are legally obliged."
Reiterating India's stand on Pakistan-sponsored terrorism, Jaishankar maintained that Kashmir is not the fundamental issue between India and Pakistan. He asserted that it is important to distinguish between Kashmir issue and dialogue with Pakistan.
"I don't think the fundamental issue between India and Pakistan is Kashmir. It is a part of the issues between us, but if you look at what has happened in the past years - 26/11 attack, attack on Indian Parliament - there are larger issues. We should distinguish between antipathy that segments of Pakistan nursed towards India from coveting Kashmir," he added.
Earlier in an interview to Asia Society Policy Institute's President Kevin Rudd, EAM Jaishankar that New Delhi does not have any problems in conducting discussions with Pakistan but not with ‘Terroristan’. He referred to Pakistan as ‘Terroristan’, adding that Islamabad has bred an ‘entire industry of terrorism’ to fuel conflict in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Addressing the issue, the EAM stated that Pakistan needs to accept the fact that the model on which they have built the state no longer works.
"They have to accept the model which they have built for themselves, no longer works. You cannot in this day and age, conduct policy using terrorism as a legitimate instrument of statecraft that is at the heart of the issue. We have no problem talking to Pakistan, we have a problem talking to terroristan," S Jaishankhar said.
(With ANI inputs)