Amid rising tension between India and Pakistan, India’s engagement with the OIC comes in the midst of escalating it. Sushma Swaraj attended the OIC meeting in Abu Dhabi today where she raised the issue of terrorism. Swaraj attended the inaugural plenary of the two-day meeting on Friday.
On the other hand, Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has announced that he will not attend the foreign ministers’ meet of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) states over the invitation extended to external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj. India is not a member of the OIC but was invited as a guest of honor.
It is for the first time that India has been invited to a meeting of the OIC, an influential grouping of 57 Islamic countries.
Pakistan’s mood on terrorist groups
Shah Mahmood Qureshi, meanwhile, has admitted that Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar is in the country, but said he is very unwell and not even in a position to leave his house. On the question of arresting him, Qureshi said that India needs to give Pakistan evidence that is acceptable in the courts of Pakistan.
India had on Wednesday handed over a dossier to Pakistan on Jaish’s role in the Pulwama terror attack. On designation of Azhar as a global terrorist by the United Nation, Qureshi said Pakistan will welcome any step that leads to de-escalation. “If they have good solid evidence please sit and talk, please have dialogue and we will be reasonable,” he said.