Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry has summoned Iran’s ambassador in Islamabad over remarks made by the Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri.
According to the Dawn newspaper on Tuesday, Mehdi Honardoost was summoned to convey Pakistan’s concerns over a warning by Baqeri that Iran would deal with the terrorists themselves if Pakistan was unable.
“We expect the Pakistani officials to control the borders, arrest the terrorists and shut down their bases…If the terrorist attacks continue, we will deal crushing blows to their safe havens and cells, wherever they are,” said Baqeri on Monday.
He made the remarks in relation to an attack on Iran-Pakistan border that claimed the lives of 11 Iranian border guards on April 11, saying the border area on the Pakistani soil has “unfortunately” turned into a haven and training ground for “Saudi-hired terrorists, who enjoy the US endorsement.”
The so-called Jaish ul-Adl terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement. The assailants escaped into Pakistani territory immediately after the attack.
Following the attack, Iran’s Foreign Ministry summoned the Pakistani ambassador to communicate Tehran’s strong protest. Last week, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif traveled to Pakistan at the head of a high-ranking political, military, law enforcement and security delegation to address the tragedy and hold talks with senior Pakistani officials.
During Honardoost’s meeting at the Pakistani Foreign Ministry, Iran was urged to refrain from making statements which may harm bilateral relations between the neighboring countries.
Meanwhile, Iranian Army’s Ground Forces Commander Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Pourdastan said that the country reserves the right to destroy the lairs of terrorists in Pakistan.