UNGA: UK PM defends Pakistan’s services in war against terror

It was definitely a momentous occasion for Prime Minister Shahid Khaqqan Abbasi to be making his maiden speech at the highest international forum. It was also an opportunity to set the record straight over President Trump’s diatribe against Pakistan followed by threats of all sorts. He had accused Pakistan of hosting safe havens for terrorists who constantly destabilise ever tottering regime in Afghanistan.

Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif got so pressurised that he blurted out that Pakistan will have to do something more to eradicate this hostile perception. However, Prime Minister Abbasi put it right that Pakistan would not allow itself to be made scapegoat for failures of others.

In this back ground Prime Minister Abbasi’s speech in the UNGA was awaited anxiously. It offered him highest podium to defend Pakistan’s case, to counter allegations of it running with the hare and hunting with the hounds and to draw attention of the international community to the colossal losses in men and material in the global war against terrorism.

May’s speech should serve as an eye-opener for the overly biased, anti-Bhutto PML-N leadership, the establishment and others in cahoots. By mentioning the colossal Bhutto tragedy, May encapsulated ugly manifestations of terrorism and its catastrophic impact on human beings world over

Usually such occasions are ceremonial, ritualistic than realistic, rhetoric is the order of the day, and substantively there is more of repetition of past speeches since no old issue is resolved. Only top of the order world class statesmen make a difference. Unless one is a leader of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s stature, one cannot expect anything worthwhile. SKA’s speech was drafted by the Foreign Office experts and it reflect issues related to Pakistan such as Kashmir, Afghanistan, Palestine and currently genocide of Muslims in Myanmar.

Regretfully Pakistan’s foreign office lost its glory after General Ziaul Haq’s coup against Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. As we all know during Zia’s ten years followed by General Pervez Musharraf’s with interregnum of quasi-democratic governments — Foreign Office lost all its professionalism. It became an extension of ISI, foreign policy got usurped by the intelligence and security apparatus.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif brought the cat out of the bag. It was an intelligent move by him not to have a foreign minister. Foreign policy became glaringly a reserve of the military. He acknowledged this Praetorian suzerainty by offering space to the army chief by not appointing a foreign minister for four years. Throughout, foreign policy was handled by General Raheel Sharif who had assumed the role of a powerful foreign minister as well.

Prime Minister Abbasi’s speech was more of routine than anything extra-ordinary. Its criticism that it was hastily drafted is matter of opinion. However, if a Kashmiri leader of repute such as Dr Syed Nazir Gilani says that there was much amiss in the Kashmir portion of his speech, then it must be. His presentation was as good or as bad as could be. He strongly criticised India for its human rights violations in IOK and increasing cross-border skirmishes. Any false flag incident could get converted into lethal conflagration — to say the least-both the countries being nuclear.

Indeed, the credit for genuinely defending Pakistan’s role in war against terrorism in UNGA goes to British Prime Minister Theresa May. Portion of her speech in which she remembered her friend — martyred Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto — mother victim of all terrorism — Ms May gave what could be called inadvertently an effective reply to President Trump’s accusations against Pakistan.

In an emotional speech Ms May — her country becoming victim of frequent acts of terrorism — reminded the world of her friend Benazir Bhutto who was martyred by terrorists. “This year is the tenth anniversary of the death of the woman who introduced me to my husband, and who was known well to many of us in this United Nations. Benazir Bhutto was brutally murdered by people who actively rejected the values that all of us here in this United Nations stand for.” Recalling Bhutto, who was killed in a terrorist attack in December 2007, she stood aloft against terrorism “in a country that has suffered more than most at the hands of terrorists.” She was “murdered for standing up for democracy, murdered for espousing tolerance, and murdered for being a woman”.

May’s speech should serve as an eye-opener for the overly biased, anti-Bhutto PML-N leadership, including the establishment and others in cahoots. By mentioning about the colossal Bhutto tragedy, Ms May encapsulated ugly manifestations of terrorism and its catastrophic impact on human beings world over. There could not be a better exposition of the evil that threatens every one where ever one is. Indeed, beards of terrorists need to be singed in their dens.

Pakistan’s run-away General Pervez Musharraf avoiding his arrest for murders of Benazir Bhutto and Akbar Bugti — has exposed his devil’s workshop. There is not enough space to respond to him for his epileptic outbursts, one would suffice to repeat to him words of British Prime Minister that Bhutto was “murdered for standing up for democracy, murdered for espousing tolerance, and murdered for being a woman.”

And this is all that GPM stood against. He had subverted democracy and committed act of treason by violating the Constitution. He told Benazir not to return, opposed her participation in elections and threatened her life. Moreover, he is the one who had closest links with the Jihadi terrorist networks. His defence of Hafiz Saeed shows how deeply involved he is with such elements.

One single act of having the crime scene washed by fire tenders under his orders within minutes of her assassination — is enough proof to indict him. Brigadier (retd) Javeid Iqbal Cheema, former director general of National Crisis Management Cell (NCMC) had told the ATC that he had received orders direct from the Presidency to have the area washed immediately.

This could be judged from the fact that General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani as DG ISI investigated the attempt on President Musharraf’s life, got to the bottom of the case through a telephone chip recovered from the scene of the blast. In Bhutto’s case, the master mind destroyed all the evidence.

Daily Times

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