India issues 12th note verbale to Pak on diplomats harassment

India and Pakistan have been ringing each other's doorbells and running away

India and Pakistan have been ringing each other's doorbells and running away

Pakistan has decided not to send its high commissioner back to New Delhi until the overall situation improves and Indian secret agencies stop harassing its diplomatic staff and their families.

Dr. Muhammad Faisal said, India seemed to be confused after the arrest of its spy K.Jhadav in Pakistan.

Pakistan has decided not to participate in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) meet in New Delhi next week, as a protest against alleged harassment of its diplomats in India.

The official told the daily that the high commissioner would stay back for an indefinite period.

"Our high commissioner will not return to India anytime soon", the Express Tribune quoted a senior foreign office official as saying. He said India wants its mission in Pakistan to function normally in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, 1961.

The Indian High Commission in Islamabad has sent yet another complaint of harassment to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan on Saturday.

India today gave a Note Verbale to Pakistan through its high commission in Islamabad protesting the "intimidation and harassment" of its staff there, the 12th such diplomatic note in less than three months. However, the MEA has for the time being not called its envoy Ajay Bisaria to New Delhi for discussions in this regard.

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Pakistan's commerce minister Malik, had been expected to meet his Indian counterpart Suresh Prabhu, but Islamabad chose to boycott the meeting following the row over the harassment of diplomats. Both sides have been alleging that their respective diplomats have been subjected to abuse by local people and governments, and that is hampering their work.

Pakistan also claims that the "nature, scale and intensity" of recent harassment at the hands of India has never been witnessed before.

A source said, "We can not send our commerce minister to India in the current situation and India has been informed about it".

The Indian external affairs ministry even played down Pakistan's move as a routine affair.

According to India, its ambassadors in Pakistan were intercepted/intimidated seven-eight times in the last few days.

The stand-off, they said, started much earlier - in May a year ago - with the Pakistani government "intermittently blocking Indian government websites in Pakistan" and "visa seekers facing trouble".

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