Just hours ahead of being in the same room as Indian Minister of State For External Affairs MJ Akbar, for the Brussels conference on Afghanistan, Advisor to the Pakistan PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz accused India of sponsoring terrorism in his country.
Aziz was speaking at the European Institute of Asian Studies in Brussels. He accused India of ‘sponsoring terrorist campaigns in Pakistan to foment separatist movements’ as well as of ‘ceasefire violations’. He added that “India opposes the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor for no apparent reason than to obstruct the economic development of Pakistan.” A press release by the Pakistan Information Department further added, “Mr. Aziz pointed out that India also maintained direct military pressure on Pakistan through deployment of advance weapons systems, offensive troops positioning and exercises along the border to refine the capacity of a surprise attack, as envisaged in its Cold Start Doctrine.”
The Brussels conference takes forward the global efforts of re-building war torn Afghanistan. While speculations are rife that Akbar and Aziz may come face to face in the conference, sources say it is unlikely that the two will have a formal exchange on the sidelines.
In the wake of ongoing tensions, post the Uri attack, the two leaders recently avoided a bilateral exchange during the SAARC foreign ministers’ meet along the sidelines of the UNGA summit in New York, despite being in the same room.