New Delhi: India on Wednesday hit out at Pakistan for denying overflight clearance to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s VVIP plane for his upcoming visit to the US, saying Islamabad should reflect upon its decision to deviate from well established international practice and reconsider its “old habit” of misrepresenting the reasons for taking unilateral action.
Pakistan’s denial comes days after it refused permission to President Ram Nath Kovind’s aircraft to fly over it during an official trip to Iceland.
In response to a query on the recent denial of overflight clearance, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said: “We regret the decision of the government of Pakistan to deny overflight clearance for the VVIP special flight for a second time in two weeks, which is otherwise granted routinely by any normal country.”
“Pakistan should reflect upon its decision to deviate from well established international practice, as well as reconsider its old habit of misrepresenting the reasons for taking unilateral action,” he said.
Pakistan on Wednesday rejected India’s request to allow Modi’s aircraft to use its airspace for his upcoming visit to the US via Germany, citing “the current situation in Kashmir”.
“India had requested Pakistan to allow Modi to use its airspace to travel to Germany on the 21st (Sept) and return on 28th (Sept),” Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said.
Announcing the decision via a video statement, Qureshi said the Indian High Commissioner in Islamabad had been informed of Pakistan’s decision.
“In the light of the current situation in Kashmir, India’s attitude and atrocities there, we have decided to not allow our airspace for the flight of the Indian prime minister,” he said.