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India lodges strong protest with Pak over its Foreign Minister’s call to Hurriyat leader

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New Delhi, Jan 31

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale summoned High Commissioner of Pakistan Sohail Mahmood in New Delhi last night. Mahmood was summoned in connection with the telephonic conversation initiated by Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi with Mirwaiz Umar Farooq of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference.

The External Affairs Ministry said, the Foreign Secretary conveyed New Delhi’s condemnation in the strongest terms of the latest brazen attempt by Islamabad to subvert India’s unity and violate sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Terming the act as deplorable, the Ministry said, Gokhale told the Pak envoy that the move has violated all norms for the conduct of international relations even by Pakistan’s own standards.

Gokhale said, Pakistan has yet again confirmed that it officially abets and encourages individuals associated with terrorism and anti-India activities. The act, he said, has exposed to the entire international community Pakistan’s duplicity in professing their desire for normal relations with India on the one hand, while openly inciting anti-India activities on the other.

The Foreign Secretary reiterated India’s position on Jammu and Kashmir. He said, J&K is and will remain the integral part of India, and Pakistan has no locus standi in matters related to the state.

The Pakistan High Commissioner was categorically informed that India expects Pakistan to immediately desist from such actions. Gokhale said, persistence of such behaviour will have implications.

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