Is India a “friend” for Pakistan? Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari choked on the word “friend” while trying to refer to India and with the word stuck in his craw twice, he finally settled on “our neighbouring countries”.
While admitting at a news conference here on Friday New Delhi’s diplomatic success in preventing Islamabad’s attempts to bring Kashmir to the centre of attention at the UN, Bilawal started by referring to India as “our friends within…”
But he caught himself and on his second try stammered, “with our friend…”, again stopped himself and stammered, “our our”, before settling on “our neighbouring countries”.
His British-accented eloquence deserting him, this is how Bilawal’s sentence sounded: “Whenever the issue of Kashmir is brought up, our friends within, with our friend, our… our, our neighbouring countries, strongly object vociferously object and they perpetuate a post facto narrative.”
Despite the plural “countries”, he was apparently referring to only India.
“We face a particularly uphill task to try and get Kashmir onto the, into the centre of the agenda at the UN,” he said.
But unlike at his last news conference at the UN in December, he did not hurl any vicious invectives against India or its leaders this time.
Relations between Inda and Pakistan are on the ice, first, because of the terrorist attacks on India emanating from Pakistan and the free movement of terrorists, and, second, because Islamabad has refused contacts following India removing Kashmir’s special constitutional status.