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Will You Talk To Me If I Put A Gun On Your Head: EAM S Jaishankar On Bilateral Cricket Matches With Pakistan

Will You Talk To Me If I Put A Gun On Your Head: EAM S Jaishankar On Bilateral Cricket Matches With Pakistan

India and Pakistan have not competed in any bilateral series since 2012 and earlier in October, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah had out rightly dismissed speculations of Team India's tour to Pakistan for the Asia Cup, calling for the event to be held at a 'neutral venue.'

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar PTI

Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday gave a strong message to cross border terrorism emanating from Pakistan and dismissed the possibility of any cricket matches between the two neighbours. 

'Tournaments keep coming... Will you talk to me if I put a gun on your head?'

"Tournaments keep coming and you are aware of the government's stand. Let's see what happens. It is a complicated issue. Will you talk to me if I put a gun on your head? If your neighbour aids terrorism out in the open and there is no mystery about who the leaders are, where the camps are. We should never think that cross-border terrorism is normal. Give me another example where one neighbour is sponsoring terrorism against another. There is no such example. In a way, this is not even abnormal, but exceptional," NDTV quoted Jaishankar as saying.

This comes against the backdrop of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)'s earlier statement wherein it reaffirmed that the Indian team will not travel to Pakistan for the upcoming Asia Cup in 2023, fanning tensions with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). 

India's demand for a 'neutral venue'

"You know our stand on cricket. We should never accept that a country has the right to sponsor terror. Unless we don't delegitimize this, it will continue. So, there should be global pressure on Pakistan. The pressure won't come unless the victims of terror don't voice themselves. India should, in a way, lead the way because our blood is spilled," the minister added.

India and Pakistan have not competed in any bilateral series since 2012 and earlier in October, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah had out rightly dismissed speculations of Team India's tour to Pakistan for the Asia Cup, and called for the event to be held at a "neutral venue."

Pakistan's retaliatory remarks

This was not well received by the Pakistani board and PCB Chief Ramiz Raja had last month hinted at the country's withdrawal from the Asia Cup if Islamabad's hosting rights for the event were infringed owing to the Indian team's decision to not travel to Pakistan. 

In the same vein, Raja had also warned that if India pursued this chain of action and opts out of Asia Cup, the Pakistani team will also boycott the ICC ODI World Cup 2023, which is scheduled to be held in India. 

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