United Nations, September 28
Strongly hitting back at Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s rant at the UN General Assembly, India has said its citizens do not need anyone else to speak on their behalf and “least of all those who have built an industry of terrorism from the ideology of hate”.
Khan delivered his maiden speech at the 74th UN General Debate on Friday and in his almost 50-minute address, devoted half of his time to India and Kashmir, drumming up hysteria over nuclear war.
India exercised its right of reply to the statement made by Khan later on Friday and fielded its newest diplomat at its mission at the UN to fend off the allegations made by former Pakistan cricket captain.
“Every word spoken from the podium of this august Assembly, it is believed, carries the weight of history. Unfortunately, what we heard today from Prime Minister Imran Khan of Pakistan was a callous portrayal of the world in binary terms. Us vs Them; Rich vs Poor; North vs South; Developed Vs Developing; Muslims vs Others. A script that fosters divisiveness at the United Nations. Attempts to sharpen differences and stir up hatred, are simply put—‘hate speech’,” First Secretary in India’s Permanent Mission to the UN Vidisha Maitra said.
Maitra said that rarely had the General Assembly witnessed such “misuse, rather abuse”, of an opportunity to reflect.
“Words matter in diplomacy. Invocation of phrases such as “pogrom”, “bloodbath”, “racial superiority”, “pick up the gun” and “fight to the end” reflect a medieval mindset and not a 21st century vision.”
“Pogroms, Prime Minister Imran Khan Niazi, are not a phenomenon of today’s vibrant democracies,” she said.
“We would request you to refresh your rather sketchy understanding of history. Do not forget the gruesome genocide perpetrated by Pakistan against its own people in 1971 and the role played by Lt Gen AAK Niazi. A sordid fact that the Hon’ble Prime Minister of Bangladesh reminded this Assembly about earlier this afternoon.”
Maitra said Khan’s “threat of unleashing nuclear devastation qualifies as brinksmanship, not statesmanship.”
“Even coming from the leader of a country that has monopolised the entire value chain of the industry of terrorism, Prime Minister Khan’s justification of terrorism was brazen and incendiary,” she said.