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India out to link Kashmir struggle with terrorism: Pakistani FM

India sent tens of thousands of additional troops – joining 500,000 already there - to the disputed region, imposed a crippling curfew, shut down telecommunications and the Internet, arrested hundreds of Kashmiri political leaders, and turned parts of the main city of Srinagar into a fortress of roadblocks and barbed wire. (ANTARA FOTO/REUTERS/Danish Ismail/wsj/cfo (REUTERS/DANISH ISMAIL). Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

ISLAMABAD, Oct 13, 2020, The Nation. Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi yesterday said that India was trying to link the freedom movement with terrorism in occupied Kashmir, The Nation reported.

Speaking to journalists after the inauguration of New Media Centre at the Foreign Office here, he conveyed serious concerns over India’s state-terrorism in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

“Media should play its due role in collaboration with the Foreign Office in exposing the real face of India to the world. Utilizing the media’s power in modern world, we need to thwart Indian blame game aimed at diverting the world attention from the core issue of Kashmir,” he added.

Foreign Minister Qureshi stressed the need for promoting Digital Diplomacy in projecting the positive image of the country. The minister said that success of modern diplomacy was impossible without the robust engagement of media with the foreign office.

He urged the media to play active role in countering negative propaganda of the enemy and fake news against Pakistan.

The Foreign Minister said, “we need to improve our communication with the world at all fora in order to deal with the challenges of foreign diplomacy.”

He said due to proactive role of Foreign Office, Pakistan’s narrative on Kashmir was being acknowledged at international level including European Parliament and world press.

Qureshi said due to this role, now Pakistan was being viewed as the solution, not the problem and entire world was recognizing the positive role of Pakistan in Afghan peace process.

He emphasized on improving communication skills of the foreign ministry and the media persons, covering activities and developments relating to Pakistan’s foreign relations and engagements.

The Foreign Minister said that in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, importance of digital diplomacy had increased manifold.

He said that now foreign ministers of countries were holding video conferences and interacting with one another through ‘Zoom’ and other available digital resources.

Qureshi said that it was the media, which played an important role in narrative building and countering anti-Pakistan perception.

The foreign minister also said in view of modern challenges, a Strategic Communication Division has been established at the Foreign Office to fight the battle of perception.

Qureshi said Foreign Service Academy had been shifted to its new campus and its curriculum has also been improved.

He said in order to enhance capacity of the Foreign Office, “we have strengthened Legal Division.”

He said besides, establishing a Kashmir Cell, Crisis Management Unit, Economic Diplomacy Wing, several other initiatives had been taken.

The FM said efforts were being made to enhance capacity of Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad. “The Foreign Minister will be in control of Institute of Regional Studies to upgrade this facility in view of peace in neighbourhood policy,” he added.

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