Pakistan PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Rejects Idea of ‘Independent Kashmir’, Says no ‘Reality’ in Demand
New York, Sept 21: Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday said that they have developed short-range nuclear weapons and were prepared to counter the Indian Army. Speaking at the the Council of Foreign Relations, a top American think-tank, Abbasi said, “We have developed short-range nuclear weapons as a counter to the Cold Start doctrine that India has developed. Again, those are in the same command-and-control authority that controls the other strategic weapons.”
Abbasi also added that Pakistan’s nuclear arsenals were safe and secure. “We have a very robust and secure command-and-control system over our strategic nuclear assets. Time has proved that it’s a process that is very secure. It’s a process that has complete civilian oversight through the NCA,” he said.
“So let there be no doubt that any extremist element or somebody like that can gain control of fissile material or a nuclear weapon. There is just no possibility of that. And it’s time-tested, and it’s a very secure system that has been put in place,” he added.
Abbasi also said that Pakistan is a responsible global citizen, adding, “We’ve shown a responsibility on the ground with this huge war on terror that we’ve been fighting for the last 15 years. We do have nuclear capability. There’s no doubt about that. And we know how to handle nuclear waste. We had a nuclear program in the early ’60s, one of the first countries in Asia to have a nuclear program. So if we’ve managed it for over 50-odd years, I think we can continue to manage it.”
This comes two days after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj sought investigations into North Korea’s nuclear proliferation links with Pakistan. “External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj deplored North Korea’s recent actions and stated that its proliferation linkages must be explored and those involved must be held accountable,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said at a news conference in New York after the meeting during the ongoing United Nations General Assembly session. Without naming Pakistan directly, he said, “I think I am giving you enough material to try to figure out what we are talking about.”
Abbasi’s declaration comes amid North Korea’s escalating threats of nuclear warfare. North Korea had on September 15 fired another mid-range ballistic missile over Japan. Earlier this month, North Korea had conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test, defying United Nations sanctions.