SRINAGAR: Days after India warned Pakistan of dire consequences if it continues to interfere in the country’s internal affairs, Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi called up hardline Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani on Saturday evening to discuss Kashmir. The call, coming hours before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s scheduled visit to Jammu & Kashmir on Sunday, is seen as a deliberate attempt to provoke India.
This is the second time the Pakistan foreign minister is dialling a Hurriyat leader. Last week, he had telephoned moderate leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, prompting India to summon Pakistan envoy Sohail Mahmood to caution against such attempts in future.
A Hurriyat spokesman said Qureshi called Geelani at around 8.35 pm on Saturday. “The Pakistan minister discussed the prevailing political situation in Jammu & Kashmir with Geelani,” he added.
He said the Pakistan minister assured Geelani of all help in highlighting the so-called “Indian aggression and brutalities” in Kashmir.
“Pakistan will continue to extend its political, moral and diplomatic support to Kashmiris for their right to self-determination in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions,” Qureshi reportedly told Geelani.
On his part, the hardliner separatist leader urged Qureshi to activate Pakistan’s embassies all over the world to spread word about the ‘atrocities’ being committed by Indian forces in Kashmir.
Pak plans to escalate?
Qureshi is set to speak at the International Kashmir Conference at the British Parliament on Monday