SIALKOT - Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs Khawaja Asif has said that Pakistan has always strived for well-established relations with its neighbours, especially India and Afghanistan, but both the countries have not responded positively to Pakistan’s peace overtures.

Addressing his maiden press conference held at PML-N House Sialkot here yesterday after becoming the foreign minister of Pakistan, Kh Asif said Pakistan always wanted peace and good relations with its neighbour, but no one should misconstrue it as a weakness. Pakistan’s foreign minister added, “It’s high time for both India and Afghanistan to come forward, give positive response to Pakistan’s peace initiatives and be good neighbours “.

“Both India and Afghanistan must end the blame game,” he added.

The foreign minister revealed that India was continuously violating the ceasefire accord by shelling the civilian population along the Line of Control (LoC), saying that India was also supporting conspiracies against Pakistan by Afghanistan along the western border in a bid to destabilise the country on economic as well as political fronts.

Kh Asif said the defence of Pakistan was in very strong hands, as the armed forces of Pakistan had the full capability to defend every inch of the motherland.

He asked both India and Afghanistan to come forward and be the good friends of Pakistan by showing positive response towards Pakistan’s peace initiatives, besides ending the blame game.

The foreign minister added that Pakistan had been battling against the terrorism for the last several decades, besides playing its role as a frontline state for establishing durable global peace by uprooting and crushing the menace. He said the world was praising Pakistan’s frontline role against terrorism.

Asif revealed that the Indus Water Treaty had been facing dangers for the last 57 years, but both India and US were badly affecting this treaty, due to which the Indo-Pak sub-continent’s peace had become under immense threat.

He pointed out that Pakistan had never been taken into confidence by the international community over all the clauses of Indus Basin Water Treaty.

Asif said now Pakistan had effectively taken up the burning issue of stopping of Pak waters by India. He said Pakistan took up the issue of violating Indus Basin Water Treaty before the World Bank (WB) which has been playing its role as a guarantor in this regard.

The minister said that Pakistan wanted to resolve this prolonged issue amicably and was making all out sincere efforts at internal fora for this purpose.

He disclosed that Kishanganga Dam issue had almost been settled between the two nuclear armed neighbours about one and half years ago, but after suspension of talks India filled it for three times by deceiving Pakistan.

Agencies add: Asif called for honouring Indus Water Treaty (IWT) in order to ensure regional peace.

He warned that any misadventure would eventually create unrest in the region.

He said Pakistan was a peace-loving country and wanted cordial relations with regional countries on equal basis.

He said Pakistan was showing flexibility just for the cause of peace in the region.

He said India was disturbing situation at the western border, besides the Line of Control (LoC).

Asif said Afghanistan needed to play a role here as well.

He said the armed forces must be accredited for the successful curbing of violence and terror attacks across the country.