On Wednesday, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif promised “restraint and responsibility” in his response to the escalating clashes with Indian forces in the disputed region of Kashmir, Agence France-Presse reported.
An “unprovoked Indian shelling” into Pakistani-controlled Kashmir resulted in the death of one civilian and the injury of his daughter, Pakistani military officials said.
In a joint news conference with visiting U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Sharif told reporters that “Pakistan will continue to respond to the situation with restraint and responsibility in the hope that steps will be taken by India to reduce tensions,” according to AFP.
He went on to say that “we have to defuse tension and de-escalate the situation. Our objective is peace. For that, what we need is more diplomacy.”
On Tuesday, India’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Syed Akbaruddin, hinted that the renewed violence in the disputed territory would harm relations between the two nuclear-armed South Asian countries, the Associated Press reported.
He also repeated India’s demand that Pakistan assert control over anti-Indian militant groups, charge those responsible for conceptualizing the 2008 Mumbai attacks, and prevent territory under Pakistani control from being used to launch attacks against India, AP reported.
Both sides have accused the other of violating a 2003 ceasefire in recent days.
“Our side responded to the unprovoked firing from the Pakistani side with small arms. Intermittent firing went on for the whole night till Monday morning (local time),” Indian army spokesperson Rajesh Kalia was quoted as saying on Tuesday in a separate AFP report.
Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry said it had “summoned the Indian deputy high commissioner” in order to voice consternation over an alleged Indian violation of the 2003 ceasefire, “which has resulted in the loss of an innocent civilian life in Rawalakot,” according to the wire service.
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Much has been made of David Brooks’s recent New York Times column, in which confesses to missing already the civility and humanity of Barack Obama, compared to who might take his place. In NewYorker.com, Jeffrey Frank reminds us how critical such attributes are to foreign policy. “It’s hard to imagine Kennedy so casually referring to the leader of Russia as a gangster or a thug. For that matter, it’s hard to imagine any president comparing the Russian leader to Hitler [as] Hillary Clinton did at a private fund-raiser. … Kennedy, who always worried that miscalculation could lead to war, paid close attention to the language of diplomacy.”
“We haven’t seen a true leftist since FDR, so many millions are coming out of the woodwork to vote for Bernie Sanders; he is the Occupy movement now come to life in the political arena.” So says Bill Maher in his Hollywood Reporter cover story (more a stream-of-consciousness riff than an essay, actually). Conservative states may never vote for a socialist in the general election, but “this stuff has never been on the table, and these voters have never been activated.” Maher saves most of his bile for Donald Trump and Sarah Palin, writing that by nominating Palin as vice president “John McCain is the one who opened the Book of the Dead and let the monsters out.” And Trump is picking up where Palin left off.