Khawaja Asif warns India against targeting Pakistan’s nuclear installations

Khawaja Asif warns India against targeting Pakistan’s nuclear installations

Washington (Agencies): Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif on Thursday warned India against carrying out surgical strikes in Pakistan or targeting its nuclear installations, saying if that happens nobody should expect restraint from his country.

Speaking at the US Institute of Peace, a Washington-based think-tank, the foreign minister said the “relationship with India is at a lowest ebb at the moment”.

Referring to a statement of India’s Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa who has said that the Indian armed forces are ready for a full spectrum operation, Asif said: “Pakistan wants to live in peace and harmony with its neighbours.”

But if India carries out any surgical strike in Pakistan or strikes at its nuclear installations “nobody should expect restraint from us”, he warned.

Responding to a question on India, he said, “Sadly, India did not respond” to Pakistani efforts to improve relationship. “What is going on in [Indian Occupied] Kashmir is the biggest roadblock to normalisation to talks,” Asif said.

The foreign minister asked the US not to treat his country as a ‘whipping boy’ and said Washington has already lost the war in Afghanistan and is only trying to salvage the situation in the war-torn nation.

The US, he said, is focusing solely on safe haven allegations or blaming Pakistan for what they have not achieved in Afghanistan. “There are many more dimension of what is going on in Afghanistan,” he said.

Standing by his remarks on some of the terrorist groups and terrorist leaders at the Asia Society in New York last week, Asif said they were a liability. “We will find ways and means to wrapping up this business. This is a liability. [but] this cannot be wrapped up overnight.”