Pakistan’s foreign minister has accused India of preparing to launch “a false flag operation” to divert attention away from the border clash with China, Al-Jazeera reported.
This comes a day after India and Pakistan were engaged in a tit-for-tat dispute over alleged spying.
“The move of the Indian government is a clear attempt to move attention away from the disputed border between India and China and to move it towards Pakistan,” Shah Mahmood Qureshi told the Geo TV network on Wednesday.
Mr. Qureshi alleged that India, “after being beaten and embarrassed” by China in the Himalayan incident, was trying to find an excuse for an operation against Pakistan.
.India on Tuesday decided to expel half the staff in Pakistan’s embassy in New Delhi over allegations that Pakistani diplomats were “engaged in acts of espionage and maintained dealings with terrorist organisations”.
India’s move came after two people, identified as drivers for the Indian High Commission, were arrested in Pakistan earlier this month when they allegedly hit a pedestrian and tried to flee. Pakistani police said they found counterfeit currency in their vehicles. The two were later released and sent back to India.
In a reciprocal move, Islamabad also ordered a 50-percent reduction in the Indian diplomatic presence in the Pakistani capital.
“The Indian opposition is raising questions against them, which they cannot answer. So in order to divert attention, they have […] called our diplomat [to the Indian external affairs ministry] and demarched him and gave him a note verbale, accusing Pakistani diplomats of engaging in espionage,” Mr. Qureshi said.
He added that India’s “behaviour was incredibly unreasonable and in violation of the Vienna Conventions”.