Rajnath Singh remarks on nuclear weapons irresponsible, says Pakistan

‘We will have minimum deterrence’

Updated - August 17, 2019 10:04 pm IST

Published - August 17, 2019 10:03 pm IST - Islamabad

Shah Mahmood Qureshi. File photo: AP

Shah Mahmood Qureshi. File photo: AP

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has termed “irresponsible” and “unfortunate” Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s remarks that India has always adhered to its “no first use” policy on nuclear weapons but what happens in the future will depend on circumstances.

Mr. Singh’s remarks came after he visited Pokhran where India carried out the nuclear tests in 1998 when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.

“The substance and timing of the Indian Defence Minister is highly unfortunate and shows India’s irresponsible and belligerent behaviour,” Mr. Qureshi said.

“Pakistan will continue to maintain minimum credible deterrence,” he said.

The statement showed his “folly”, he said.

Mr. Qureshi’s remarks came amid tensions after New Delhi revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

The UN Security Council took up the issue of Kashmir in informal consultations. Pakistan has claimed it as big success.

The meeting ended without any outcome or statement from the powerful 15-nation UN organ, dealing a huge snub to Pakistan and its all-weather ally China to internationalise the issue, which an overwhelming majority stressed is a bilateral matter between New Delhi and Islamabad.

Mr. Qureshi said the UNSC meeting showed that the people of Kashmir were not alone.

He also rejected the idea of any conversation with his Indian counterpart S. Jaishankar.

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