In an effort to malign Pakistan on the diplomatic front, New Delhi has downgraded diplomatic ties with Islamabad blaming the latter for involvement in espionage activities in the country.
As a result, the Indian government has asked Pakistan’s Mission in New Delhi to cut staff strength at the High Commission by half within 48 hours. India will reciprocate this in Islamabad.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of India summoned Pakistan’s Charge d’Affairs and informed about the decision late on Tuesday.
It also highlighted the arrest and expulsion of two Pakistani diplomats on the ground of espionage earlier this month – a charge Pakistan vehemently denies.
It maintained that the officials had indulged in activities that are not in conformity with their status in the High Commission as well as with the Vienna Convention.
Later on, MEA issued a statement blaming Islamabad’s disregard for regular warnings.
They have engaged in acts of espionage and maintained dealings with terrorist organizations. The activities of the two officials caught red-handed and expelled on May 31 was one example in that regard.
The Foreign Office of Pakistan reacted strongly after receiving the statement.
Pakistan categorically reject and strongly condemn the baseless allegations made by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs as a pretext to seek 50% reduction in the staff strength of the High Commission for Pakistan in New Delhi.
It dismissed the allegation that any of its diplomats violated the Vienna Convention as well denied India’s claims of intimidation of Indian High Commission officials in Islamabad.
The Indian Government’s smear campaign against Pakistan cannot obfuscate the illegal activities in which the Indian High Commission officials were found involved in. The MEA’s statement is another effort to distort facts and deny the culpability of these Indian High Commission officials in criminal offenses.
The Indian Charge d’Affairs was summoned the Foreign Office to be informed about Pakistan’s reaction to the Indian move. He was also informed that Pakistan will reduce the Indian High Commission’s staff strength by 50% as a reciprocal measure. The Cd’A was asked to implement the decision within a week.
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