Pakistan warns India not to divert flow of water, says it is a ‘provocation’

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Islamabad, Pakistan has responded to India’s arm-twisting method wherein the Indian government has warned the hostile neighbouring country that it will divert the flow of Jhelum, Chenab and Indus rivers.

Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said any attempt by the Indian government to divert the flow of the rivers would be considered as “provocation” by Pakistan.

Qureshi chaired a high-level Indus Water Treaty meeting in Islamabad on Tuesday.

At the meeting, the recent statements by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to divert river water flowing to Pakistan were also discussed, an official statement said.

Qureshi said Pakistan would be within its right to “give a befitting response if any attempt is made to divert the water flow.”

Addressing an election rally in Haryana early this week, PM Modi reportedly had said that his government would stop the water flowing to Pakistan.

Faisal said that Pakistan had “exclusive rights” over the waters of three Western rivers under the Indus Water Treaty.

“Any attempt by India to divert the flows of these rivers will be considered an act of aggression and Pakistan has the right to respond,” he said, without naming the rivers.

Tension between India and Pakistan escalated after New Delhi revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on August 5. Pakistan has downgraded diplomatic ties with New Delhi and expelled the Indian High Commissioner.

Pakistan has been trying to internationalise the Kashmir issue but India has asserted that the abrogation of Article 370 was its “internal matter”. New Delhi has also asked Islamabad to accept the reality and stop its anti-India rhetoric. India has maintained that ‘terror and talks cannot go together’.

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