Pakistan denies use of airspace to Indian president


New Delhi:Pakistan on Saturday said it had denied India’s President Ram Nath Kovind permission to fly through its airspace for his foreign trip due to New Delhi’s recent “behaviour”. Such requests are usually granted by countries.“The decision has been taken in view of India’s behaviour,Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said in a statement to state broadcaster PTV, reports AFP.

According to news agency AFP, Mr Qureshi attributed the reason for its decision to India’s “recent behaviour” on bilateral issues. India, however, contends that its decision on Jammu and Kashmir was a strictly internal matter that Pakistan has no right to question.Ram Nath Kovind will embark on a tri-nation trip to Iceland, Switzerland and Slovenia from Monday, during which he is expected to brief the top leadership of those countries on issues such as cross-border terrorism.
Kovind will embark on a visit to Iceland, Switzerland and Slovenia from Monday during which he is expected to brief the top leadership in those countries on India’s “national concerns”, especially in view of terror incidents this year, including the Pulwama attack.

Khan’s government was under pressure from the Opposition and some ministers to impose on India to use its airspace after India revoked special status of Jammu and Kashmir. Although so far no decision was taken to impose the blanket ban, Pakistan showed its intention by disallowing Kovind to use its airspace.

Qureshi said New Delhi’s tough stance on Kashmir was a serious issue, which he would take up with the United Nations Human Rights Council. He noted that 34 days have elapsed since the Indian authorities imposed a crippling curfew in Kashmir before revoking the region’s special status on August 5.Pakistan had fully closed its airspace in February after an Indian Air Force strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Balakot. The country opened its airspace for all flights except for New Delhi, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur on March 27.


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