Monday Mar 11, 2019
WASHINGTON: US National Security Advisor (NSA) John Bolton has appreciated Pakistan’s meaningful steps taken against JeM and other terrorist groups.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi held a telephonic conversation with the US National Security Adviser John Bolton Monday afternoon to discuss the regional security situation following the tragic Pulwama attack.
The purpose of the call, according to the Foreign Office, was to convey Pakistan's perspective on the recent regional developments to Bolton.
"Foreign Minister Qureshi said that Indian aggression of February 26 was a violation of Pakistan's territorial integrity and sovereignty as well as the UN Charter. He also said that Pakistan's response on 27 February was purely in self defence against external aggression," a statement by the FO read.
Qureshi also apprised Bolton of the de-escalation measures taken by Pakistan. "Prime Minister Imran Khan decided to hand over the Indian pilot as a gesture of goodwill towards India," it said.
"Pakistan wished peace and stability in the region. Pakistan's High Commissioner to New Delhi had also returned to Delhi after consultations," it added.
According to the statement, Islamabad will send an official delegation to New Delhi on March 14 to discuss an agreement on the operationalisation of the Kartarpur corridor.
The FM also conveyed to the US national security adviser that Pakistan was ready to continue weekly contacts at the Military Operations Directorate level.
John Bolton said he and the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, despite being actively engaged in talks with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in Hanoi, monitored the developments between India and Pakistan and kept contact with the leadership of two countries to ensure that the security situation in the South Asia region did not deteriorate.
He appreciated Pakistan measures which had helped lower the tensions and urged continued restraint on both sides, according to the statement. "The need for dialogue between Pakistan and India to find [a] peaceful resolution to all outstanding disputes was also emphasized," it noted.
Qureshi cautioned against any Indian misadventure, keeping in view the forthcoming elections in India, to which Ambassador Bolton concurred.
The foreign office said Bolton also appreciated Pakistan's important role in the Afghan peace process and that both leaders agreed to work together to pursue the process.