India summons Pakistan envoy, registers protest on abduction of officials in Islamabad

India summons Pakistan envoy, registers protest on abduction of officials in Islamabad

India on Tuesday summoned the charge d’ affaires of the high commission of Pakistan in Delhi Haider Shah and lodged a strong protest on the issue of the abduction and torture of two officials of the high commission of India in Islamabad by Pakistan security agencies.

"The Government of India strongly condemns and deplores the action of the Pakistani authorities in this regard. This premeditated, grave and provocative action on the part of the Pakistani authorities, preceded by intensified surveillance, harassment and intimidation of high commission personnel over the past several days, was designed to obstruct and disrupt the normal functioning of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad," the government said in a statement.

"The attempt by Pakistani authorities to levy false accusations and concocted charges on the officials of the High Commission is rejected in entirety," it added.

Two officials of the Indian high commission were forcibly abducted by Pakistani agencies on Monday and kept in illegal custody for more than 10 hours. They were released only after strong intervention by the high commission of India in Islamabad and the ministry of external affairs in Delhi.

The two Indian officials were subjected to interrogation, torture and physical assault resulting in grievous injuries to them. They were video-graphed and coerced to accept a litany of fictitious allegations and concocted charges. The vehicle of the Indian high commission, in which they were travelling, was also extensively damaged.

In the statement, New Delhi slammed the actions of Islamabad, terming them "egregious violation".

"These actions by Pakistan not only constitute an egregious violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961 as also the ‘Code of Conduct for treatment of Diplomatic / Consular personnel in India and Pakistan signed in 1992 and reaffirmed by both sides in March 2018, but are also against all established norms and practices of diplomatic conduct," it said.

The Indian government also shared with Shah its concerns regarding threats from Pakistan agencies to physically harm more officials of the Indian mission.

Shah was also apprised of Pakistan's responsibility for the safety and security of the Indian high commission, its officials, staff members, their families and properties in Pakistan.

"Such continued unilateral actions by Pakistan, aimed at escalating tensions, will not succeed in diverting attention from the core issue of Pakistan’s continued hostile activities and sponsorship of cross-border terrorism against India," it added.

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