News For First Time, Indian Diplomats Attend Pakistan Day Parade; President Mamnoon Hussain Rakes Up Kashmir Issue

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SOURCE: OUTLOOK INDIA

For the first time in Pakistan history, senior Indian military officials and diplomats posted in Islamabad attended the military parade to mark the Pakistan Day on Friday. A senior military official told The Express Tribune that the Pakistan Army invited Indian defence attache and senior diplomats of the Indian High Commission to join March 23 celebrations.

PTI reported that Indian deputy high commissioner JP Singh was seen seated among the foreign diplomats invited to witness the parade. On the occasion, Pakistan President Mamnoon Hussain accused India of ceasefire violations and human rights abuses, saying New Delhi’s actions have put regional peace at stake.

He also raked up the Kashmir issue at the “Pakistan Day” joint military parade in Islamabad.

Pakistan Day commemorates the passing of the famous Lahore Resolution on March 23, 1940, when the All-India Muslim League demanded a separate homeland for the Muslims of British India. On this day in 1956, Pakistan became the world’s first Islamic republic.

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena was the ‘Guest of Honour’. He was received by Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at the parade ground.

Referring to cross-border ceasefire violations President Mamnoon accused India of gross human rights violations in Kashmir.

“With these actions, Pakistan’s neighbour has put the regional peace at stake,” he said.

Calling upon for an immediate and peaceful resolution of the struggle of Kashmiri people, the President said, “The only solution to the dispute of Kashmir is to provide the right of self-determination to Kashmiris, and Pakistan will continue to play its role in this regard.”

He said that Pakistan was ready to extend a hand of co-operation to the regional countries, but “taking it as a weakness will be a dangerous mistake”.

Mamnoon also said that the global scenario has changed, and now countries could not be coerced to tow the line of one particular country.

Cautioning against exploitation, suppression of nations and interference into the internal affairs of any country by another nation, he said “Pakistan’s foreign policy was about achieving permanent peace in the world and is based on non-interference into internal issues of other countries”.

He said that Pakistan had been playing a vital role for the global peace and rendering commendable services from the UN platform for it.

On the issue of Afghanistan, Mamnoon said that Pakistan would continue playing its role for peaceful resolution of the Afghan issue.

“Pakistan had always played a historic role in the peaceful settlement of Afghan issue and for the stability of the Afghanistan government.”

He said that Pakistan was ready to extend a hand of co-operation to the regional countries, but “taking it as a weakness will be a dangerous mistake”.

Mamnoon also said that the global scenario has changed, and now countries could not be coerced to tow the line of one particular country.

Cautioning against exploitation, suppression of nations and interference into the internal affairs of any country by another nation, he said “Pakistan’s foreign policy was about achieving permanent peace in the world and is based on non-interference into internal issues of other countries”.

He said that Pakistan had been playing a vital role for the global peace and rendering commendable services from the UN platform for it.

On the issue of Afghanistan, Mamnoon said that Pakistan would continue playing its role for peaceful resolution of the Afghan issue.

“Pakistan had always played a historic role in the peaceful settlement of Afghan issue and for the stability of the Afghanistan government.”

Earlier, the day began with a 31-gun salute in Islamabad and 21-gun salute in the provincial capitals.

Security was on high alert in the capital and mobile phone services remained suspended. Around 2,000 military and police personnel were deployed.
 
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