Qureshi urges India to exercise restraint

Islamabad: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Sunday urged India to exercise restraint and do away with its war mongering and aggressive posturing. Addressing a media briefing here, he said Pakistan is taking steps to de-escalate tensions but India is making emergency preparations to put pressure on Pakistan. The Minister said Indian government has issued circulars to employees in Occupied Kashmir, cancelling their leaves and ordering them to make hoardings of stocks and food. He said India was dispatching additional ten thousand troops to the held valley in anticipation of a bigger crackdown. As a result, Kashmiris are scared and they have shut down their businesses, he added. Qureshi said a wave of harassing and tormenting Kashmiris has set in and there are reports of Kashmiri people across the country being beaten, their properties set light and intimidated. The minister said Hurriyet leadership has been taken into custody and steps are being taken to deport them from Kashmir. He said Indian police and security forces are acting as silent spectators and do nothing to stop this harassment campaign against Kashmiris. The Foreign Minister gave a clear message to India that Pakistan will not be cowed down by its threats and bullish attitude. He said the whole nation is united to defend the motherland and our army, politicians, youth, and old stand shoulder to shoulder to counter any aggression by India. Qureshi said Pakistan wants peace but it should not be misconstrued as our weakness.