Thu, Oct 27, 2016 | updated 02:37 AM IST

Pak envoy's statement will encourage elements against India-Pak peace talks: Khurshid

Updated: Aug 14, 2016 14:07 IST

New Delhi, Aug 14 (ANI): Former external affair minister Salman Khurshid on Sunday expressed remorse over Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit's remarks on Kashmir and said Islamabad instead of acting with patience and understanding has raked an issue, which will encourage elements not in favour of peace between India and Pakistan.

Asserting that Basit's comments have given a great setback to the international peace, Khurshid told ANI that instead of focusing on the future, Pakistan has once again made a U-turn from its statement that it does not want to dig the past and focus on the future.

"It is very saddening. We were thinking that after all this time Pakistan had a chance to act with patience and understanding, but it did not. Even Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also in the past said that we don't have to dig the past as it is more important to focus on the future," said Khurshid.

"Again they have raked the same issue, I think it is very saddening, it is a great setback to the international peace. And this will also encourage those elements, who do not wish for peace between India and Pakistan. I am extremely saddened by this remark," he added.

Basit earlier today said Islamabad has dedicated the 70th Independence Day to the freedom of Kashmir.

"As far as the relation of Jammu and Kashmir is concerned, we dedicate this year's Independence Day to Kashmir's freedom. We are confident that the sacrifices made by the people of Jammu and Kashmir would be successful," Basit said.

He asserted Pakistan has always given moral support to Jammu and Kashmir's freedom struggle and would continue to do so.

"Struggle for independence will continue till Kashmir gets freedom; sacrifice of the people of Kashmir will not go in vain," he said.

India had earlier this week summoned the Pakistani envoy amid growing tension between the two Asian neighbours over the violence in Kashmir.

Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar summoned Basit to his office and lodged a strong protest over the issue as he made a specific reference to LeT terrorist and Pakistan national Bahadur Ali, who was captured recently in North Kashmir during an encounter. (ANI)