Pakistan: FO rejects US Congressmen’s concerns on rights violations


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday rejected concerns expressed by a number of US lawmakers over possible human rights violations following the arrest of hundreds of rioters involved in ransacking military installations and other state symbols.

A group of more than 65 members of the US Congress wrote a letter to the Secretary of State Antony Blinken, urging Pakistan to ensure the country fulfils its commitment to human rights. Chairman of the US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, Bob Mendez recently raised similar concerns.

Reacting to the development, Foreign Office Spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch said that Pakistan did not agree with the “characterisation that has been made on developments around May 9 and the situation in Pakistan.”

“You may have seen the National Security Committee’s statement, which has clearly spelt out the factual situation around the May 9 events. We believe that Pakistan is fully capable of dealing with all domestic challenges in accordance with our laws and our Constitution,” the spokesperson explained.

“We are cognizant of our constitutional obligations to protect the rights and property of all our citizens. We are committed to ensure the observance of national law, maintaining public order and respecting the Constitution, and democratic traditions and human rights principles. These constitutional guarantees and fundamental freedoms are underwritten by our judiciary,” she further added.

To a question, the spokesperson said that Pakistan saw the reports about a mural installed at the new parliament building in New Delhi. “The mural depicts so-called ancient India, including areas that now constitute parts of Pakistan and other regional countries. We are appalled by the statements made by some BJP politicians including a Union Minister, linking the mural with ‘Akhand Bharat’ (Unified greater India),” the spokesperson said.

“The gratuitous assertion of ‘Akhand Bharat’ is a manifestation of a revisionist and expansionist mindset that seeks to subjugate the identity and culture of not only India’s neighbouring countries but also its own religious minorities.”

“It is a matter of grave concern that the idea of ‘Akhand Bharat’ is being increasingly peddled by individuals belonging to the ruling dispensation in India.”

“The Indian politicians are well-advised not to indulge in rhetoric against other countries merely to further their divisive and parochial political agenda. Instead of nurturing hegemonic and expansionist ambitions, India should resolve disputes with its neighbours and work with them to build a peaceful and prosperous South Asia,” according to the