23 July , 2019
Pakistan Willing To Give Up Nuclear Weapons If India Does The Same: Imran Khan
Khan thanking the Pakistani-American community for support on his first visit to USA as PM of Pakistan.
Washington: Pakistan is willing to give up its nuclear weapons if India does the same, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has said.
“If India said we would give up our nuclear weapons, would Pakistan?” Khan on a three-day official visit to the U.S. was asked during an interview on Fox News “Special Report with Bret Baier”.
“Yes, because nuclear war is not an option. And between Pakistan and India, the idea of nuclear war is actually self-destruction, because we have two and a half thousand-mile border,” Khan answered.
“Also, I think there’s a realization in the subcontinent and there was some incident that happened last February, and we again had tension at the border. An Indian plane was shot down in Pakistan. So, there’s a realization and that’s why I asked President Trump if he could play his role, the U.S. is the most powerful country in the world, the only country that could mediate between Pakistan and India and the only issue is Kazmir [Kashmir].”
“The only reason for 70 years, that we have not been able to live like civilized neighbors, is because of Kazmir [Kashmir],” Khan was quoted as saying in the transcript published by Fox News.
Khan called on India to go to the negotiating table first and expressed optimism about the U.S. stepping in to help broker a deal.
“I really feel that India should come on the table. The U.S. could play a big part, President Trump certainly can play a big part. We’re talking about 1.3 billion people on this Earth. Imagine the dividends of peace if somehow that issue could be resolved,” he said.
Hours earlier, Trump offered, during a meeting with Khan at the White House, to be the “mediator” between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir issue.
Khan welcomed the offer, arguing that the mediation was needed as there can never be a bilateral resolution of the Kashmir dispute.
However, India reiterated its stance that Kashmir is a bilateral issue and stressed that all issues between India and Pakistan could be resolved bilaterally.
For India, the Simla Agreement, signed by Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Pakistani President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in 1972, and the Lahore Declaration, signed by Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in 1999, provide the basis to resolve all issues between the two countries.
Khan reacted by posting his surprise on his Twitter account.
“Surprised by reaction of India to Pres Trump’s offer of mediation to bring Pak & India to dialogue table for resolving Kashmir conflict which has held subcontinent hostage for 70 yrs. Generations of Kashmiris have suffered & are suffering daily and need conflict resolution,” he posted to his 10 million followers on the microblog.
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