Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who drew a void to respond to the widespread political and economic crisis in Pakistan, predictably sought to distract a rebellious domestic and apathetic global audience over fears of a nuclear war with India over Kashmir.
In an interview with the Al Arabiya TV channel, Shehbaz Sharif called on UAE mediation for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to seriously and honestly discuss the so-called Kashmir issue. Otherwise, he said, “we are a fully armed nuclear power, and if God forbid a war, whoever survives will tell what happened.”
Sharif said it was simply part of the two-state theory that India should cede the Kashmir Valley to Pakistan, otherwise a nuclear war would likely break out between the two countries. But the main problem with Pakistan’s incitement to terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir has been conveniently ignored by Park, as the military and equally responsible political leadership of the Islamic Republic have used Pakistani terror factories to target India. While the US and France understand Park’s role in instigating terrorism at J&K, the European powers at Rawalpindi GHQ ignore the terrorist threat to India and talk only about the possibility of a nuclear war between India and Pakistan. Past remarks by PDM leaders make it clear that Pakistani politicians across the spectrum have a visceral hatred for India and envy of their eastern neighbors.
Foreign Minister S Jaishankar has made it clear that talks with Pakistan can only happen if jihadist terrorism is out of bilateral relations, but Pakistan’s inexperienced foreign minister Bilawal Zardarii and his deputy Hina Khar have slandered Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the UN. India’s “Aman ki Aasha” ecosystem, or pacifist activists, also want talks with Pakistan to bring the conflict-resolution factory back to life in the Indian subcontinent.
Pak PM has asked UAE rulers to facilitate dialogue with India, but it is true that the word Kashmir is not even mentioned in the bilateral statement issued by Shehbaz Sharif while visiting Dubai seeking US dollars for everyday life. In fact, the UAE is a very close ally of India, with political leadership constantly in touch with each other on religious terrorism and radicalization.
Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves are currently about $4 billion, which can only handle 3 shares of imports. Although the Pakistani rupee-USD exchange rate is being held stable by the State Bank of Pakistan, which is providing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to the country’s currency, inflation rates have hit record highs amid food shortages across the country. Except for the state of Punjab.
Pakistan’s troubles multiplied on November 28, 2022, after Pakistan’s Terek-e-Taliban ended a ceasefire with Pakistani forces and launched an offensive in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, with casualties soaring. The Islamic Republic’s internal security situation deteriorated as Baluch and Sindh rebels were active and targeted Pakistani security forces with the support of TTP operations.
The Pakistani Prime Minister’s call for talks on Kashmir with India has no acceptor in Modi’s government and this indifference could lead Rawalpindi to escalate violence in the valley through infiltration and lone wolf attacks. But Pakistan knows escalating terrorism with India is counterproductive as it will now invite retaliation from the Modi government. As Afghanistan’s Taliban government engages Pakistan over the festering Durand Line, Pakistani forces cannot afford to open a front on either side of the border. Kashmir has been reduced to a talking point in Pakistan’s diplomatic lexicon.