Hizbul Mujahideen leader Syed Salahuddin on Saturday denounced United States declaring him as a global terrorist, and lamented that Washington gave Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi a red carpet welcome despite denying him entry into U.S. earlier over the Gujarat riots.
Addressing a press conference at the Muzaffarabad's Centre Press Club, the Hizbul commander said the declaration was a joint move by the U.S., Israel, and India to express their animosity towards Pakistan, reports the Express Tribune.
He also alleged that the Islamic State (IS) and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) were being backed by India, Israel and the US to weaken Pakistan.
Further, training his guns on the Indian Prime Minister, Salahuddin said referring to the 2002 riots in Indian Gujarat, Modi was even banned from travelling to the US and now the he has been given a red carpet welcome in Washington.
In 2005, Modi was denied visa to travel to New York to address Indian-Americans at a rally after his failure to stop a series of deadly anti-Muslim riots three years earlier in Gujarat, where he was chief minister.
Salahuddin also complained that the U.S. sidelined Pakistan but signed a F-16 fighter jet deal with India.
"Despite Pakistan's role on the front-line in the war on terror, the US ignored it and signed a deal to provide F-16 jets technology to India. Similarly, the US builds pressure on Islamabad to close its nuclear programme, while it signs a nuclear deal with India," he said.
Rejecting the US declaration of his terrorist status, Salahuddin said it was "a big lie" to declare a freedom fighter a global terrorist.
The U.S. Department of State on June 27 declared Salahuddin, "Specially Designated Global Terrorist", hours before visiting Prime Minister Modi's meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump.