New Delhi: Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar's call for a UN-led third party probe into the brutal killing of Indian soldiers has sparked off an angry response in India. Indian diplomats claim this is Pakistan's attempt to internationalise the issue.
Speaking to IBN18 Editor-in-Chief Rajdeep Sardesai during a debate on CNN-IBN, former Indian diplomat KC Singh said, "Civilian governments tend to duck. When the military does something, then Pakistan puts civilian government in the front. In this case, if Hina Rabbani Khar really was in control, she shouldn't have gone back to the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP), which is provoking India."
KC Singh said, "This has been done to suck UN back in. How can a foreign minister make an argument like this when there is a convention providing means for settling it."
When former Pakistan minister Javed Jabbar questioned during the debate as to why did India want to avoid an independent third party mechanism evaluating the charges, KC Singh said, "There is 49 convention to which both are signatories."
Meanwhile, External Affairs minister Salman Khurshid admitted that the incident is a set back to normalisation of Indo Pak ties but also added that India should tread cautiously taking one step at a time. "I would imagine that this issue has very serious implications. But let's take it one step at a time. I don't think we should either let our guard down or get hysterical. Let's take one step at a time. Let's get a formal response from them and then we will see."
When asked whether India was ready to take it up at the UN International Convention, Khurshid said, "Because we are distressed and disturbed doesn't mean that we will give a go by to sort out positions that we have taken about not inviting multilateral interference. We have consistently maintained this in the bilateral situation between India and Pakistan."
Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar denied Pakistan's hand in the killings of Indian soldiers. Speaking to CNN-IBN, she said Pakistan was ready for a third party to verify their claims if 'India doesn't believe in our enquiry'. She also told CNN-IBN that Pakistan had completed its investigation.
Pakistan Ambassador to India, Salman Bashir, also reiterated that the country did not violate ceasefire or cross the Line of Control (LoC) at any point of time. Pointing that a Pakistani post was attacked on January 6 wherein a soldier had died, Bashir said that though the matter was raised by the Foreign Ministry, Pakistan had refrained from going to the media.
Ex-Pak army general blames LeT for killing of two Indian soldiers
Reacting to India's protest, Former Pakistan Army General Talat Masood has denied the role of the army in the killing of Indian soldiers, saying "Jihadis like Lashkar-e-Toiba could be behind the attack".
Masood further claimed that the Pakistani army is not backing militants.
Clear evidence of Pakistan's involvement: Antony
There is clear evidence that Pakistani troops were involved in the killing of two Indian soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir in an "inhuman" manner, Defence Minister AK Antony said Wednesday.
"That it has happened is real. There is clear evidence to it," Antony told reporters on the sidelines of a function at the Indian Statistical Institute here.
Antony's statements came in the wake of Pakistan denying its involvement in the latest killings.