Washington: The United States (US) condemned the derogatory remarks of BJP’s members against Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) which has sparked outrage around the Muslim world and demanded an apology from the Indian government.
The condemnation from the US government came days after India’s ruling party BJP’s spokesperson Nupur Sharma and its media head Naveen Kumar Jindal had passed hateful comments toward Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).
Following the incident, Muslim countries, including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kuwait, Oman, Indonesia, Iraq, the Maldives, Bangladesh, Jordan, Libya, and Bahrain not only had condemned the remarks but also boycotted Indian products.
The Indian police also shot dead two Muslims protesting the BJP spokesperson’s blasphemous remarks and demolished a female Muslim activist’s house illegally.
Late Thursday night, in a press briefing, US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price condemned the incident and urged for respect human rights.
“This is something that we’ve condemned. We condemn the offensive comments made by two BJP officials, and we were glad to see that the party publicly condemned those comments,” he added.
Ned Price further stated that the US government regularly raises issues regarding human rights and freedom of religion.
“We regularly engage with the Indian government at senior levels on human rights concerns, including freedom of religion or belief, and we encourage India to promote respect for human rights,” he said.
Ned Price went on to say that the secretary said we believe in the same values: human dignity, human respect, equality of opportunity, and the freedom of religion or belief. “These are fundamental tenets, these are fundamental values within any democracy, and we speak up for them around the world,” he said.
While calling Pakistan a ‘partner’ to the US, spokesperson Price vowed to strengthen ties between the two countries.
“Pakistan is a partner of ours, and we will look to ways to advance that partnership in a manner that serves our interest and our mutual interests as well,” he said.
Speaking about the meeting of Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, he said the US government had a couple of meetings with representatives of the new Pakistani government.
“[The] meeting was a very good, constructive discussion regarding the full range of issues, including the issue of food security,” he added.
On a question if the US government is still talking with India about buying oil from Russia, Ned Price said: “India’s relationship with Russia is one that developed over decades, and it developed over decades at a time when the United States wasn’t prepared or able to be a partner of choice for the Indian government.”
“But throughout it all, we have made clear to our Indian partners that we are there for them, we are ready and able and willing to partner with them, and we’ve done just that,” he concluded.