Archive for the ‘Shah Mehmood Qureshi’ Category

China’s Offer As Peacemaker Between Pakistan, India Rejected

December 30, 2008

China, a longtime adversary of India, tried in vain to become an “honest broker”  between India and Pakistan in the wake of the Mumbai terror massacre.  But predictably, India rejected the notion….


China’s aim of playing some kind of an “honest broker” between India and Pakistan did not end up as it had imagined.

Although Pakistan welcomed Chinese special envoy He Yafei with open arms on Monday, India  developed some last-minute hearing disability that prevented him from visiting Delhi. It left China with a mission incomplete, but a message from India that cannot be ignored.

By The Times of India

According to reports from Pakistan, the Chinese envoy met the top leadership in Islamabad and told them to “de-escalate” tensions with India. He also said a conflict would only strengthen the hands of terrorists. China, he said, was “deeply worried about the resurfacing of tensions in South Asia.”   

Over the weekend, during a phone call made by China’s foreign minister Yang Jiechi to Pranab Mukherjee, he suggested that resuming talks with Pakistan could be constructive. Mukherjee, already on a short fuse, rejected any such suggestion. But Pakistan picked up on it and its foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Tuesday repeated the call for resumption of talks.

The official Chinese version of the phone conversation said, “China hopes that India and Pakistan, both important neighbours of China, would bear in mind regional peace and stability, properly handle related issues through dialogue and consultations, and continue to improve their relations and to push forward the peace process between the two countries.”

India’s discomfort with such do-good missions is well known and China certainly is no stranger to it. But clearly, China wanted to get a foot into the cauldron here, thereby achieving a couple of key objectives, said sources. First, to acquire a status of the regional big brother, keeping squabbling countries at peace, and second, to keep India in “its place” – the South Asian box.

India has tried hard to widen the terrorism debate after the Mumbai attacks beyond Pakistan, but without much success. Part of the reason is the history of the region and partly because Pakistan wants to keep it to the bilateral dynamic. In this, Pakistan is helped along by China.

China had put a “technical hold” on the ban of the JuD in the UN Security Council and only relaxed it after the Mumbai attacks made it impossible to keep on with it.

Pakistan wants talks, India denies military escalation

December 30, 2008

Pakistan on Tuesday called for talks with India to defuse tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours, as New Delhi denied claims it had moved troops into offensive positions on the border.


The comments from the foreign ministers of the south Asian rivals were the latest in a series of tit-for-tat responses since the Mumbai attacks that India blamed on Pakistan-based militants, triggering a deterioration in relations. “Dialogue is in the interest of both the countries — we should sit across the table,” Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said in a policy statement broadcast live on local television.

“India should de-activate its forward air bases and relocate its ground forces to peacetime positions,” Qureshi said. “This will send a positive signal and reduce tensions in the region.”

Qureshi described developments in the past two days — such as a hotline conversation between high-level military officials from the two countries — as “positive”.

But his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee quickly fired back, saying New Delhi had carried out no military movements near the already heavily militarised common border beyond a “normal winter exercise”.

“First there should be escalation from the Indian side, then the question of de-escalation will come. We have not escalated anything,” Mukherjee told the Press Trust of India news agency.

 Pakistan’s Ugly, Dangerous Game

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