India summons Pak envoy Basit over discourtesy to Bambawale

New Delhi [India], Sept. 7 : Pakistan's High Commissioner to India, Abdul Basit, has been summoned by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) over the discourtesy shown to Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Gautam Bambawale in Karachi.

"Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit was summoned to MEA (and) was conveyed concern of GOI on discourtesy to Indian High Commissioner," tweeted MEA official spokesperson Vikas Swarup.

"He was conveyed our hope that our accredited diplomats in Pak will be allowed to discharge their normal functions wIthout hindrance," he added.

Following his statement calling on Islamabad to focus on their own problems and asserting that Kashmir was an internal matter of India, the Karachi Chamber of Commerce cancelled the Indian envoy's event at the last minute, where he was to address the business community.

Earlier in his keynote address at the Karachi Council on Foreign Relations, Bambawale responded to a question about the Kashmir unrest and the recent statement by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Balochistan, saying that both Pakistan and India had issues which needed to be resolved, the Dawn reported.

"There are problems in both India and Pakistan and you [Pakistan] should focus on resolving your problems before looking into the problems of other countries," he said.

On the discussions between the two countries, Bambawale said that despite high tensions, there had been contacts at the operational level, adding that the Indian government had been saying: "Let's work together to get to the bottom of terrorism which was a headache not only for Pakistan, but for India and the world." Bambawale said the way forward between Pakistan and India was to talk about every issue possible and grab the low-hanging fruit because "that's where we'd be able to increase trust and confidence".

He said many in Pakistan had asked him why the two nations had stopped playing cricket. "Not only should we have cricket fixtures, but also hockey and table tennis matches." Bambawale further asserted that it was India's desire to see a Pakistan which was moderate, prosperous and stable, and at peace with itself, its neighbours and the rest of the world.

Source: ANI