India has accused intelligence agencies of Pakistan of intercepting and threatening two staff members of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad last week, The Indian Express reported on Tuesday. The Indian diplomats in Islamabad were reportedly questioned about an alleged incident of inappropriate behaviour by an official of the Pakistan High Commission in Delhi.
The Indian High Commission in Islamabad has sent a note verbale to the Pakistan Foreign Ministry regarding the incident. “On January 15, at 10 am, while going from the High Commission to the World Mart market in Diplomatic enclave, two of the staff members of this [India] mission, were intercepted by Pakistani agency personnel and questioned them about the alleged incident with a Pakistan High Commission official in India on January and why that happened,” the note verbale said. “Further, they threatened mission officials that they would reciprocate in the same way.”
The note verbale requested the Foreign Ministry to investigate the incident and instruct the relevant agency to ensure that such incidents are not repeated. It also asked the ministry to share the findings of the investigation with the Indian High Commission.
The note said that harassment of officials violate the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961.
On January 13, Pakistan formally protested India’s handling of a situation involving an official from its High Commission in New Delhi. The official, an assistant to the Pakistani naval attaché, was at Sarojini Nagar market, where a woman alleged that he had behaved inappropriately with her.
Islamabad had reportedly expressed its disapproval over the official being detained despite him informing the police about his envoy status. Delhi Police officials, however, denied reports the Pakistani official was arrested or detained.
In a separate note verbale, the Ministry of External Affairs lodged a “strong protest” with Pakistan’s Foreign Office over reports of a speech delivered by Fazlur Rehman Khalil, the chief of the banned Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, promoting terror against India, reported Hindustan Times.
“The ministry registers its strong protest at the use of Pakistan-controlled territory by extremist and terrorist elements to freely promote violence and terror against India,” the note sent to the Pakistan High Commission said.
It also called on Pakistan to abide by its “bilateral commitment to not allow any territory under its control to be used for terrorism against India”.