Indian Army chief's statement 'invitation for nuclear encounter': Pakistan
Pakistan foreign minister Khwaja Asif called the statement of the Indian Army chief as 'very irresponsible'. Photograph: (ANI)
Pakistan foreign minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif on Saturday issued a nuclear threat to India in response to a statement by Indian army chief General Bipin Rawat saying that the force was ready to call Pakistan's "nuclear bluff" and cross the border to carry out any operation if asked by the government.
The Pakistan foreign minister called the statement of the Indian Army chief as "very irresponsible" on Twitter and said it amounted to an "invitation for a nuclear encounter". He also said that the army was "welcome to test our resolve".
“Very irresponsible statement by Indian Army Chief,not befitting his office. Amounts to invitation for nuclear encounter.If that is what they desire,they are welcome to test our resolve.The general's doubt would swiftly be removed, inshallah.”— Khawaja M. Asif (@KhawajaMAsif) January 13, 2018
Addressing the press in Delhi on Friday, the Indian Army chief had made the statement about the forces being ready to call Pakistan's nuclear bluff. He was responding to a question on the possibility of Pakistan using its nuclear weapons in case the situation along the border deteriorates.
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After the Pakistan foreign minister's remarks, the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal also criticised the Indian Army chief's statements on Twitter.
The threatening and irresponsible statement by the Indian Army Chief today is representative of a sinister mindset that has taken hold of India. Pakistan has demonstrated deterrence capability.1/2— Dr Mohammad Faisal (@ForeignOfficePk) January 13, 2018
These are not issues to be taken lightly. There must not be any misadventure based on miscalculation. Pakistan is fully capable of defending itself. 2/2— Dr Mohammad Faisal (@ForeignOfficePk) January 13, 2018
Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor reacted to General Rawat's statement Pakistan has a credible nuclear capability, exclusively meant for the threat from the east. "But we believe it's a weapon of deterrence, not a choice," Geo TV quoted him as saying.
(With inputs from ANI)