- PM’s adviser says UN’s name mistakenly mentioned in list of NGOs involved in Afridi’s fake campaign
- Opp senators walkout from Senate in protest against adviser’s ‘unsatisfactory policy statement’
Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz informed the National Assembly on Tuesday that this perception was wrong that Osama bin Laden was traced in Abbottabad due to the fake polio campaign launched by Dr Shakil Afridi.
Responding to a point of order raised by Senator Farhatullah Babar of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), he said that the wrong perception led to attacks on polio workers, adding that there were only 60 to 65 different areas in the country where the campaign could not be launched properly.
Aziz said the United Nations’ name was mistakenly mentioned in the list of NGOs involved in Shakil Afridi’s fake campaign, which had been clarified in Tuesday’s newspapers as well.
Earlier, on a point of order, Senator Babar said it was a matter of concern that World Health Organisation (WHO) had recommended some travel restrictions over Pakistan on polio issue.
Sartaj Aziz also said that it was government’s policy to not intervene in internal matters of other countries and it will focus on the economy through a strong foreign policy.
Aziz was giving the policy statement in response of the discussion regarding foreign policy of the government with particular reference to the situation likely to emerge after elections in India and Afghanistan.
He said that Pakistan has revived its foreign policy while the decision of the government to start dialogue with the Pakistani Taliban was also a part of the country’s foreign policy to improve law and order situation for the foreign investment in this regard.
The advisor said that the government had ensured Afghanistan that it will not do any intervention in their internal matters. He, however, urged other neighbouring countries to follow the same policy also.
Earlier, Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Aitzaz Ahsan said that approach of the new leadership of India and Afghanistan after elections towards Pakistan has not improved and the government should adopt a clear foreign policy to get positive results in this regard.
He said that it was difficult to understand that the government failed to give any result out of dialogue with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).
Aitzaz pointed out that there was no foreign minister appointed as yet as the government was relying on an advisor. He urged Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to appoint a full time minister to deal with foreign affairs of the country.
Later, PPP Senator Mian Raza Rabbani said that the advisor on foreign affairs has failed to convince the opposition through his speech today.
“The weekly briefing of the foreign office was better than the statement of the advisor on foreign affairs in the Senate,” he said.
“We all are stakeholders of the state and the government should not consider the Parliament irrelevant,” Rabbani added.
Aitzaz Ahsan also said that the opposition was not satisfied with remarks of Sartaj Aziz.
Later, the opposition staged a walkout from the Senate protesting against the unsatisfactory policy statement of the advisor on foreign affairs.