United Nations

Indian minister calls Pakistan a ‘terror factory’ in UN speech

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 September, 2017, 3:58pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 24 September, 2017, 4:57pm

India responded with irritation on Saturday to Pakistani allegations of brutality in Kashmir, saying that while India had made substantial progress since independence, all Pakistan had achieved was a reputation as the “pre-eminent export factory for terror”.

Addressing the annual United Nations General Assembly, Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj rejected allegations by Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at the world body earlier in the week in which he accused India of state-sponsored terrorism and violating human rights.

“Those listening had only one observation: look who’s talking,” Swaraj said. “A country that has been the world’s greatest exporter of havoc, death and inhumanity became a champion of hypocrisy by preaching about humanity from this podium.”

Swaraj said Pakistanis should look at the progress India had made since the two countries emerged after independence from Britain in 1947.

“Why is it that today India is a recognised IT superpower in the world, and Pakistan is recognised only as the pre-eminent export factory for terror?” she said.

On Friday officials from both sides said shelling along the disputed border between Pakistan and India killed six people and wounded 30 in the latest confrontation between the two nuclear-armed countries.

The firing took place across the frontier separating Pakistan’s Punjab province from Indian-administered Kashmir’s Jammu region, and most of the casualties were reported on the Pakistani side.

On Thursday in New York, Abbasi urged the UN secretary general to appoint a special envoy for Kashmir and accused India’s military of brutality in a crackdown against anti-India activists.

He said hundreds of Kashmiris had been killed or injured and shotgun pellets have blinded and maimed others.

India rejected the allegation. It accuses Pakistan of backing several anti-India militant groups and helping them infiltrate Kashmir to stoke violence and carry out terrorist acts. Pakistan denies the charge.

Both countries claim Kashmir, and have fought two of their three wars over the Himalayan region, which they have disputed since partition and independence.