V K Singh
New Delhi: Asserting that it acted in interest of national security in expelling a Pakistan High Commission official in October, Government yesterday said it has no intention to add to the strain in ties with Pakistan caused by Islamabad's continued policy of cross-border terrorism.
Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh, in the Rajya Sabha, said tension in the relationship between the two countries has been caused by Pakistan's continued policy of directing cross border terrorism against India and supporting other anti-India activities.
India had expelled Pakistan High Commission staffer Mehmood Akhtar on charges of spying, triggering a tit for tat action by Islamabad. "In declaring Mehmood Akhtar persona non grata and asking for his return to Pakistan, the government acted in the interest of national security. It is not government's intention to add to the strain in the relationship with Pakistan, which is caused by the latter's continued policy of directing cross border terrorism against India and supporting other anti-India activities," Singh said.
Striking a conciliatory note, Pakistan yesterday said it does not want to live in "perpetual hostility" with India. Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit said the two countries must overcome the differences in order to embark on a "irreversible trajectory" of cooperative relationship.
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