Imran dials Johnson, MBS; Qureshi to visit Beijing

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Islamabad: A Pakistan on Wednesday continued its efforts to win diplomatic support for its stance against India’s move to revoke the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, with Prime Minister Imran Khan reaching out to Britain and Saudi Arabia, while Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi is to leave for Beijing to discuss further steps in countering India.

Imran Khan, who had dialled his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday to convey Pakistan’s condemnation of India’s move, on Wednesday spoke over phone with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Khan briefed Johnson about the Indian move to end the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

According to details, both the leaders agreed that the issue needs to be resolved through dialogue.

In his talk with the Saudi Crown Prince, the two leaders “discussed the development of the situation in the region and efforts exerted towards it,” the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said.

“HRH the Crown Prince was also briefed by the Pakistani Prime Minister on the latest developments in Kashmir,” it said.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Qureshi said he might leave for Beijing to consult with the Chinese leadership on how to proceed further after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government’s move in Kashmir.

He made the remarks in a joint session of Parliament called to discuss India revoking special status for Jammu and Kashmir.

Qureshi said that he might “dash off to Beijing.”

China on Tuesday sided with all-weather friend Pakistan in voicing “serious concern” over the Kashmir situation and backed Islamabad’s position in stating that Kashmir is “a legacy of history between India and Pakistan”. Beijing also said that New Delhi should avoid actions to “unilaterally change the status quo”, and termed the decision to reorganise Ladakh as a Union territory as “unacceptable”

Qureshi also refuted the opposition’s claims that the Imran Khan government was caught off guard by the the Indian government’s actions.

–IANS

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