Islamabad: Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Sunday tried to defend Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani opting out of his pre-scheduled visit to the UAE after the gulf nation honoured Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the highest civilian award, but ended up making contrasting statements on Sunday.

While responding to a media question, Qureshi first said that if the Senate Chairman has cancelled his trip considering the views of Pakistani people, who are protesting against the Indian government over the abrogation of special status in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, then it is justified. However, he further said Pakistani people are emotional but they should not forget that the UAE has helped the nation financially.

"The Chairman was to visit the UAE with a delegation. He made the decision to not go while considering the views of Pakistani people who are protesting against the Narendra Modi-led government's actions in Kashmir. If he has taken his decision considering these emotions then it is justified," said Qureshi.

"Our people are emotional. We should not forget that the UAE has helped us in hard times. Pakistani should consider that also. When we talk emotionally we forget everything" he said. Notably, the UAE has provided a bailout package of USD 2 billion to Pakistan.

According to Geo News, Sanjrani was scheduled to visit the UAE, along with his parliamentary delegation, from 25 August to 28 August on the invitation of the UAE government. During the visit, the delegation was slated to hold meetings with the UAE parliamentarians and government officials.

Sources told The Express Tribune that Sanjrani cancelled the visit as he felt that it would "hurt the feelings of the Kashmiri people". Pakistan has been rattled by the Indian government's move to abrogate Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir and found itself completely isolated on the matter. The country has been snubbed on all fronts, noticeably, by the SAARC countries, most of which have made it clear that the Kashmir issue is India's internal matter.

A similar narrative had played in the aftermath of the airstrikes conducted by the Indian Air Force at Balakot, when Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had cancelled a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) hosted by the UAE as the group did not pay heed to Islamabad's demand of rescinding the invitation to India's former external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj.