Tuesday, 25 June, 2024, Reg No- 06
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Trade with India suspended due to heavy duties: Pak

Published : Monday, 20 May, 2024 at 12:00 AM  Count : 79

ISLAMABAD, May 19: Trade ties between Pakistan and India have remained suspended since 2019 due to imposition of heavy duties by New Delhi on imports from Pakis­tan after the Pulwama attack, Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar told the National Assembly in written reply to a question on Saturday.

Dar was referring to a suicide attack on a bus carrying soldiers in Indian-occupied Kashmir on Feb 14, 2019, in which 40 personnel lost their lives.

"India decided to impose 200 per cent duty on imports from Pakistan, suspended the Kashmir bus service and trade across the Line of Control," he said.

The reply was over a question by Sharmila Faruqui seeking details about challenges being faced by Pakistan in its relations with neighbouring countries.

Dar highlighted the challenges confronting Pakistan in its relations with India, Afghanistan and Iran. "We have consistently advocated constructive engagement and result-oriented dialogue to resolve all outstanding issues, including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir.

"But Indias intransigence and retrogressive actions have vitiated the atmosphere and impeded the prospects of peace and cooperation," Mr Dar added.

He said that India continued its efforts to consolidate its occupation of held Kashmir and unleas­hed a wave of oppression on hapless Kashmiris. "Indias belligerence poses a serious challenge to efforts for normalisation of relations."

The foreign minister said India had engineered acts of subversion in Pakistan and the "onus is now on Delhi to take steps for the creation of an environment that is conducive to peace and dialogue".

Regarding Afghanistan, Mr Dar said Pakistan believes that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan is a strategic imperative for Pakistan.

"Pakistan has consistently remained engaged with the interim Afghan government, neighbouring countries and the international community to achieve the objective of peace and stability in Afghan­istan," the reply said.

But, the foreign minister regretted, "terrorism from Afghanistan has emerged as a major challenge" for Pakistan over the last several years in the shape of attacks by the TTP and its affiliates based in Afghanistan.

"Freedom of movement enjoyed by the TTP there has hampered efforts to improve bilateral relations," Mr Dar said.    —Dawn

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