At SCO foreign minister’s meeting, S Jaishankar calls Pakistan’s Bilawal Bhutto Zardari ‘spokesperson for terror industry’

Team India Sentinels Friday 5th of May 2023 11:41 PM

S Jaishankar (L) with Bilawal Bhutto Zardari at the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting in Goa.

Benaulim, Goa: At the Shanghai Cooperation Organization foreign ministers’ meeting here, India’s foreign minister, S Jaishankar, launched a scathing attack on his Pakistani counterpart, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, for Islamabad’s continuous support to anti-India terrorism. Appearing before reporters after the meeting of the foreign ministers, Jaishankar said Zardari was the “promoter, justifier, and spokesperson of a terrorism industry”.

Jaishankar said, “As a foreign minister of an SCO member state, Mr Bhutto Zardari was treated accordingly. As a promoter, justifier, and spokesperson of a terrorism industry, which is the mainstay of Pakistan, his positions were called out and countered including at the SCO meeting itself.”

Jaishankar didn’t stop there. Replying to a reporter’s question, Jaishankar continued to assail Pakistan. He said, “Victims of terrorism do not sit together with perpetrators of terrorism to discuss terrorism. Victims of terrorism defend themselves, counter acts of terrorism, they call it out, they legitimize it – and that is exactly what is happening.”

On Zardari coming to India for the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting, Jaishankar said, “He [Zardari] came here [in India] as the foreign minister of an SCO member state. That is part of multilateral diplomacy.”

Then, urging the media not to read too much into Zardari’s India visit, Jaishankar further added, “Don’t see it as anything more than that. I think that nothing from what he said or what I heard he said deserves for this to be treated more than that.”

Jaishankar didn’t stop at that. Taunting Islamabad on its support to anti-India terror groups while ignoring Pakistan’s own domestic woes, the top Indian diplomat said, “They are committing acts of terrorism. I don’t want to jump the gun on what happened today, but we are all feeling equally outraged. On this matter – the terrorism matter – I would say that Pakistan’s credibility is depleting faster than even its forex reserves.”

Watch Jaishankar’s full interaction with the media here:

Bilawal reacts

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari returned to Pakistan after the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting, on Friday. During an interaction with reporters in Karachi, Zardari, in reply to a question on his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar’s remarks, said, “I understand there is an insecurity behind this criticism.”

He said the reason for New Delhi’s “insecurity” was that India, especially the BJP, was spreading a “false narrative, propaganda, and lie” about Muslims.

The Pakistani foreign minister then said, “By going there [to India] and speaking and presenting our stance [at the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting], we broke that myth and propaganda. They try to give the impression that every Muslim is a terrorist so that hatred spreads there [in India] and they [the BJP] could win elections.”

Zardari further said, “They try to prove that every Pakistani is a terrorist, but when Bilawal Bhutto Zardari sits before them, their false narrative and propaganda are negated even if I say nothing.”

Watch Bilawal Bhutto’s full interaction with the media here:

It may be noted that the ties between India and Pakistan are lowest in decades. New Delhi has refused to hold any dialogue with Islamabad on any subject following the 2016 terror attack on an Indian Army camp in Jammu & Kashmir’s Uri.


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