‘Keep India out of Turkmenistan gas project’


Islamabad : Pakistan must not let “sworn enemy” India join the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan gas pipeline project to prevent it benefiting and acquiring more means to “oppress the Kashmiri people as well as plot against Pakistan”, an editorial in a Pakistani newspaper said Thursday.

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Noting that after a long hiatus, Turkmenistan and Afghanistan had revived the project to supply natural gas from Turkmenistan to Pakistan and India via Afghanistan, the editorial in the Nawa-i-Waqt said that even during the preliminary talks on the project, it had urged the Pakistani government “to ensure India is not made a part (of it)”.

“In the same way, we had urged that India is kept out of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project. But it was included but later surreptitiously and virtually abandoned the project under American pressure,” it said, adding that there was “no need” to associate India with the Turkmenistan project.

“Associating India in this project would mean we aid the sworn enemy of our country to benefit and allow it to benefit financially. We allow it more means to tighten its grip on Indian Muslims and the oppressed Kashmiris as well as fund its schemes against our country,” the editorial said.

It claimed it was the “considered opinion” of the people of Pakistan that India should not be allowed to remain in either the Iran or Turkmenistan project and if it does, then Pakistan “must excuse itself from them”.

“We cannot associate with India in anything that benefits it until it stops oppressing the Kashmiris and implements the UN resolutions. Only then can there can be friendship and cooperation with India,” the editorial said.