Pakistan has lodged a formal complaint on the “repeated, unacceptable and unprovoked attacks” on Pakistani soldiers by the Indian army, said a statement released on Jan. 11 from the foreign secretary, Jalil Abbas Jilani. He has summoned the high commissioner of India, Sharat Sabharwal, to the Foreign Office and lodged the protest after Indian troops shot and killed a Pakistani soldier inside the so-called line of control in the contested territory of Kashmir on Jan. 10.
Pakistan, a nonpermanent member of the United Nations Security Council, is the president this month in the rotating seat. It has not met with the UN press corps formally to discuss the recent flareup with India, which finished its two-year term on the council on Dec. 31, 2012. During India’s presidency of the council in November, it called the Security Council “completely out of tune” with the global picture. India has been vying for a permanent seat on the council for quite some time, and recommended that a permanent seat also be given to Africa and Latin America. The council has five permanent seats, held by Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States.
Three violations of the nine-year-old cease-fire between Pakistan and India in Kashmir occurred in the last week, while India said two of its soldiers died in a cross-border raid days earlier as another Pakistani soldier died on Sunday. Until now, the cease-fire has operated with relative calm since 2003.
The Pakistani foreign secretary asked the Indian government to investigate the violations along the demarcation line by Indian troops and “take necessary steps to ensure their non-recurrence.” Jilani reiterated Pakistan’s offer to hold an independent inquiry into the incidents through the UN Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan (Unmogip), which was originally set up in 1949 and has about 110 military observers, international civilian personnel and local staff members.
India, however, has rejected the call for a UN inquiry. saying it did not want to “internationalize” the issue.
In the statement, Pakistan said it “reiterates its commitment to a peaceful resolution of all outstanding issues through a sustained and result-oriented dialogue with India.”
Meanwhile, Pakistan suffered several bomb blasts this week, with at least 115 people dead, as the country approaches a general election in June.
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Dulcie Leimbach is a co-founder, with Barbara Crossette, of PassBlue. For PassBlue and other publications, Leimbach has reported from New York and overseas from West Africa (Burkina Faso and Mali) and from Europe (Scotland, Sicily, Vienna, Budapest, Kyiv, Armenia, Iceland and The Hague). She has provided commentary on the UN for BBC World Radio, ARD German TV and Radio, NHK’s English channel, Background Briefing with Ian Masters/KPFK Radio in Los Angeles and the Foreign Press Association.
Previously, she was an editor for the Coalition for the UN Convention Against Corruption; from 2008 to 2011, she was the publications director of the United Nations Association of the USA. Before UNA, Leimbach was an editor at The New York Times for more than 20 years, editing and writing for most sections of the paper, including the Magazine, Book Review and Op-Ed. She began her reporting career in small-town papers in San Diego, Calif., and Boulder, Colo., graduating to the Rocky Mountain News in Denver and then working at The Times. Leimbach has been a fellow at the CUNY Graduate Center’s Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies as well as at Yaddo, the artists’ colony in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.; taught news reporting at Hofstra University; and guest-lectured at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the CUNY Journalism School. She graduated from the University of Colorado and has an M.F.A. in writing from Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. She lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.