India silent on Pakistan’s retaliatory strikes on Iran

After expressing understanding for Iran’s air strikes in Pakistan, India on Thursday refrained from making any comment on Islamabad’s retaliatory attacks. Government, however, believes that Iran’s targeting of a Balochi terror group, Jaish al Adl, in Pakistan has vindicated its position that Pak-sponsored cross-border terrorism remains the greatest threat to regional security.
“We have issued a press release where we have cleared our stance on terrorism. We will not be commenting on the Pakistan-Iran matter,’’ said a MEA spokesperson.
On Wednesday, recalling its uncompromising position of zero tolerance towards terrorism, government had said it understands action that countries take in self-defence. India’s apparent backing of Iran’s action, which was meant to rescue Iranian soldiers abducted by the Pakistan-based terror group, sits well with its own anti-terror operations in 2016 and 2019 on Pakistani soil, following the targeting of Indian forces by UNSC-proscribed terror outfits.
Terrorism, especially cross-border terrorism that Pakistani authorities have used as aforce multiplier against India, has been one of the recurring themes of Indian foreign policy.
Counter-terrorism is also an important area of cooperation between India and Iran, even as New Delhi maintains strong security ties with Israel, which sees Iran as the main source of international terrorism. India has also traditionally attached great importance to Iran’s role in promoting peace in Afghanistan.
India will hope that Iran’s actions will draw international attention also to continued activities of groups like JeM and LeT, which operate out of Pakistan and also remain active in Afghanistan. Pakistan’s reluctance to act against these groups, and their UN banned leaders, has been the reason why India has not had any bilateral engagement with Islamabad for the past 8 years.
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