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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Pakistan says India posing 'immediate threat' to regional peace

Iran Press TV

Tuesday, 16 February 2021 7:17 PM

Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has voiced concern about India's acquisition of advanced naval weapons technology and accused New Delhi of adopting "aggressive policies" toward Islamabad.

In comments made to the International Maritime Conference in the Pakistani port city of Karachi on Monday, the top Pakistani diplomat said the Hindu nationalist government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi was raising the risk of a potential conflict by deploying indigenously developed and foreign-made weapon in the strategic Indian Ocean.

"India's belligerent and aggressive policies — currently driven by an extremist Hindutva ideology — pose an immediate and pervasive threat to international and regional peace and security," he said.

"Pakistan will continue to take all necessary measures to ensure its security and to maintain credible minimum deterrence," Qureshi added.

In 2016, the New Delhi government changed the balance of naval power in the region by announcing that it had formally commissioned a nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine.

India also operates a second nuclear submarine, the INS Chakra II, which is a Russian Akula-class submarine acquired on a 10-year lease in 2012. A third nuclear submarine, the INS Arighat, is currently under construction.

India has in recent months also bought a total of 36 French Rafale fighters in a deal estimated to be worth USD 9.4 billion. They are all scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2021.

Relations between India and China have been tense recently over the frontier territory of Ladakh, where a skirmish between the soldiers of the two countries left 20 Indians dead in June last year.

India and Pakistan have fought three full-scale wars and several minor conflicts since they gained independence from Britain in 1947.

India regularly accuses Pakistan of arming and training militants and allowing them to cross the restive frontier with disputed Kashmir valley. Pakistan strongly denies the allegation.

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