‘Harassment of diplomats taken up with India’
Islamabad/New Delhi: A week after he was called back for consultations amid raging row between India and Pakistan over harassment of diplomats, Pakistan High Commissioner to India Sohail Mahmood will return from Islamabad tonight, officials said Thursday.
Foreign Office spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal said that the high commissioner stayed in Pakistan for consultations for some days and also called on the prime minister.
“His presence here was useful and many important issues in addition to the harassment of officials in New Delhi were discussed. He is returning to India tonight,” he said.
According to Pakistani officials, Mahmood will host a series of events tomorrow to mark the ‘Pakistan National Day’ at the country’s mission in New Delhi, including a dinner reception.
In the morning, the Pakistani envoy will also hoist the flag and deliver a speech, they said.
Mahmood was called back to Islamabad for consultations after alleged incidents of “harassment” of its diplomatic staff in New Delhi with Foreign Office spokesman Faisal claiming that the Indian government failed to take notice of the increasing incidents of intimidation of Pakistani diplomats, their families and staffers by its intelligence agencies.
India and Pakistan have accused each other of harassing diplomats in Islamabad and New Delhi respectively.
Responding to a question about India’s allegations of harassment of its staff in Pakistan, Faisal said India “has not shared any evidence with us about their complaints” while “Pakistan is seriously concerned over the treatment being meted out to the diplomats, officials and families, including small children, at the Pakistani High Commission in New Delhi.”
“We have lodged strong protests with the Indian Government over these unfortunate incidents of harassment and intimidation, evidence of which is widely available on social media. We have also stressed that the safety and security of the diplomats, officials and their families is the sole responsibility of the Government of India, under the Vienna Convention,” he said.
Faisal said that Pakistan was a responsible member of the international community and was making all possible efforts to ensure the safety and security of the diplomats stationed in Islamabad.