–Imran claims he doesn’t know about Uighurs, says China ‘extremely helpful’ to Pakistan
–Says that Pakistan and India cannot even ‘afford a cold war’
Prime Minister Imran Khan has categorically stated that Pakistan would neither fight anyone’s war in future nor be treated like a hired gun because the country had paid a huge cost in the Afghan war.
In an interview with TRT World, a Turkish news channel, the prime minister said from Afghan jihad onward, Pakistan paid an enormous price in the form of 80,000 casualties, four million Afghan refugees, militancy and the emergence of kalashnikov culture.
The prime minister said instead of the previous mantra of doing more, Pakistan would now be an ally in peace, adding the country has been playing its role to facilitate the peace process in Afghanistan.
‘DOESN’T KNOW ABOUT UIGHURS’
Responding to a query pertaining to conditions of Uighur Muslims in China’s far western Xinjiang province, the PM feigned ignorance, saying he doesn’t know much about the conditions Uighur community lives in.
The interviewer asked about Pakistan’s silence on the treatment being meted out to the Muslim ethnic community, asking is Pakistan not criticising China because it is doing business with the emerging superpower.
The Muslim community is reportedly facing persecution at the hands of the Chinese government. According to a report, up to 1.1 million people are believed to be held in “concentration camps” where they are allegedly forced to renounce their religion and Uighur language, and memorise and recite Chinese characters and propaganda songs.
China denies these reports and terms it “Western propaganda”.
Responding to a query, he said China has been extremely helpful to Pakistan as it has been developing special economic zones and Gwadar Port that would boost the national economy. He said China has cooperated with Pakistan in a number of areas, which he cannot even disclose because China wants Pakistan to keep the details of aid confidential.
‘INDIAN GOVT USING ANTI-PAK RHETORIC TO BAG VOTES’:
On Pak-India ties, the prime minister said far before breaking ground for Kartarpur Corridor, he had offered the Indian government to hold dialogue as two nuclear nations could not even afford cold war, what to talk of a nuclear one. But, he said, Pakistan was rebuffed by India just to bag anti-Pakistan votes as the elections are coming up there.
Imran Khan also lamented the unabated killings of innocent Kashmiris in Indian Occupied Kashmir. He said the international community including the United Nations acknowledge that there is an indigenous freedom struggle in occupied Kashmir and its solution lies only in dialogue, not violence.
‘TURKEY CLOSE TO PAKISTANIS’ HEARTS’:
On Pak-Turkish ties, PM Imran claimed that even before the creation of Pakistan, the Muslims of the sub-continent had a special liking for Turkey for being the only independent Muslim state that time.
He added that even the Muslims of this region had donated money to support the Turkish freedom struggle. [Muslims of sub-continent launched Khilafat Movement to support Ottoman Caliphate that had been abolished after Ottomans lost the World War I. Kamal Attaturk finally abolished the institution in 1924 and sent the caliph in exile].
During his visit to the brotherly country, the two sides decided to form a working group to ponder over the enhancement of bilateral trade during the next five to ten years, he revealed.
On the state of economy, the PM said that the government was striving to stabilise the national economy by increasing foreign reserves and exports.