Islamabad. After being elected the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Shahbaz Sharif raised the issue of abrogation of Article 370 from Kashmir in his very first speech, alleging that people are ‘bleeding’ in the Valley. And Pakistan will raise this issue in every international forum along with giving them ‘diplomatic and moral support’.
The 70-year-old leader, who replaced Imran Khan, said that he wants good relations with India, but it cannot be achieved without the resolution of the Kashmir issue. He said that neighborhood is not a matter of choice, it is something “we have to live with” and unfortunately Pakistan’s relations with India have not been good from the beginning. He hit out at Khan for not making “serious and diplomatic efforts” on India’s abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019.
Shahbaz Sharif, the younger brother of three-time Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif said, “In August 2019, when there was forceful encroachment and abrogation of Article 370, what serious effort did we try… Blood is flowing on the streets of Kashmir and the Kashmir Valley is red with their blood.” He expressed his desire for better relations with India but linked it to the Kashmir issue.
The newly elected prime minister said, “We want better relations with India but lasting peace is not possible until the Kashmir dispute is resolved.”
I’ll advise PM Modi to understand that there is poverty on both sides. I call upon Modi to come and resolve the Jammu and Kashmir issue and then let’s fight poverty together: Newly elected Pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif
— ANI (@ANI) April 11, 2022
He said that Pakistan will continue to provide political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Kashmir. Shehbaz Sharif said, “We will raise our voice for Kashmiri brothers and sisters at every platform, make diplomatic efforts, give them diplomatic support. We will give them moral support.”
He asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to come forward to resolve the Kashmir issue so that both the countries can focus on tackling poverty, unemployment, shortage of medicines and other issues on both sides of the border.
“Why do we want our future generations to suffer. Let us resolve the Kashmir issue in accordance with UN resolutions and the expectations of Kashmiris, so that we can end poverty on both sides of the border.”
Relations between India and Pakistan deteriorated after the 2016 terrorist attack on the Pathankot Air Force Base. This was followed by an attack on the Indian Army camp in Uri, after which relations deteriorated further. In August 2019, India abolished the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and announced the bifurcation of the state into two union territories. This made the relationship worse.
Pakistan downgraded its diplomatic ties with India and deported the Indian High Commissioner from Islamabad. It also cut off all air and land links with India and suspended trade and railway services.
India has said that it wants normal neighborly relations with Pakistan in an environment free from terror, hostility and violence. India has said that it is the responsibility of Pakistan to create an environment free from terrorism and enmity.