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Imran hints N-war as a ‘consequence’ of Pakistan losing conventional war

Sep 16, 2019, 10.34 AM IST
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Pakistan won't start war or use nukes first against India, says Imran Khan
Pakistan won't start war or use nukes first against India, says Imran Khan

Highlights

  • Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan raised the spectre of a nuclear war with India once again over the Kashmir issue
  • Raking up the Kashmir issue, Khan said: “Eight million Muslims in Kashmir are under siege for almost now six weeks
  • He made these comments in an interview to Al Jazeera
(This story originally appeared in on Sep 15, 2019)
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan raised the spectre of a nuclear war with India once again over the Kashmir issue while elaborating that this could be a “consequence” in the event of Islamabad losing a conventional war with New Delhi.

In an interview to Al Jazeera that was telecast on Saturday, Khan reiterated that nuclear war between the two neighbours could be a possibility. “When two nuclear-armed countries fight, if they fight a conventional war, there is every possibility that it is going to end up into nuclear war. The unthinkable.”

While emphasizing that he was clear that Pakistan would never start a war, Khan said: “I am a pacifist, I am anti-war. If say Pakistan, God forbid, we are fighting a conventional war, (which) we are losing, and if a country is stuck between the choice: either you surrender or you fight till death for your freedom, I know Pakistanis will fight to death for their freedom. So when a nuclear-armed country fights to the end, to the death, it has consequences.”

Imran Graph

Raking up the Kashmir issue, Khan said: “Eight million Muslims in Kashmir are under siege for almost now six weeks. And why this (Kashmir) can become a flashpoint between India and Pakistan is because what we already know India is trying to do is divert attention from their illegal annexation and their impending genocide on Kashmir.”

He accused India of drawing the attention away from the Kashmir issue by blaming Pakistan for terrorism. Referring to the suicide bombing in Kashmir’s Pulwama, he said: “And this is what they did last February when there was a suicide attack by a young Kashmiri boy, blowing himself up against an Indian military convoy, and India blamed Pakistan for it and then bombed us.”

“So we fear that this will happen again because what they are doing in Kashmir will lead to a reaction, some sort of reaction, and they will then blame Pakistan for it to divert the world’s attention from the genocide in Kashmir,” he said. This, Khan said, was the reason why Islamabad was approaching every international forum, including the UN, “because this is a potential disaster that would go way beyond the Indian subcontinent”.

Expressing his disappointment over global response after India withdrew the special status accorded to J&K by Article 370, the Pakistan PM said: “Unfortunately, because of this whole thing about big markets, some countries look at big markets, they look upon India as a market of one billion people, they don’t realise that if they do not intervene right now, it will have consequences for not only the subcontinent but the world’s trade — everyone will be affected by this.”

Khan said Pakistan had made attempts to open dialogue with India till recently, “but there is no question of talking to the Indian government right now after they revoked Article 370”.

“We discovered that while we were trying to have dialogue, they were trying to push us in the blacklist in FATF (global terror financing watchdog Financial Action Task Force) ... If Pakistan is pushed into the blacklist of FATF, that means there will be sanctions on Pakistan. So they were trying to bankrupt us economically, so that’s when we pulled back. And that’s when we realised that this (Indian government) is on an agenda ... to push Pakistan to disaster,” he said.

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