Pakistan is now viewed as ‘part of solution’ over Afghan issue: FM - Pakistan Today

Pakistan is now viewed as ‘part of solution’ over Afghan issue: FM

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday said that Pakistan had played its due and sincere role in facilitating the Afghan peace talks and now it was being regarded as part of the peace solution.

Speaking to a local TV channel, the foreign minister said that contrary to the country’s past image when it was branded as part of the problem, Pakistan has emerged as the major leader for peace and stability in the region.

He said that the peace process in Afghanistan should not be derailed as it would not be in the interest of Afghan people, who strongly deserved it.

To a question, Qureshi replied that US President Donald Trump had openly expressed his desire to exclusively visit Pakistan after elections and not merely as a stopover, which had been a practice in the past.

To a query about the situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK), the minister said that United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, during their recent visits, had reaffirmed their strong positions, besides the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) had also firmly reiterated its support to Pakistan over the issue.

Qureshi said that Pakistan has successfully fulfilled the requirements and guidelines of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The present government took sweeping steps to check terror financing and money laundering with effective legislation, he said, regretting that the previous regimes had failed to move on these issues.

He maintained that the steps were also acknowledged during the recently concluded meetings of the FATF body. Pakistan took serious actions and implemented a plan of action.

“India had miserably failed in its sinister designs to push Pakistan on the FATF blacklist,” he added.

About another question, he said that Pakistan had already demanded justice for the victim families of Samjhauta Express blasts.

“It was the duty of the international community to exert pressure on India to act and bring the culprits to justice. There should be no dual standards when it came to India to fulfil its global obligations,” he stressed.

The foreign minister said that there were about 28,000 Pakistani students studying in China and the government was making all-out efforts for their well-being.

To a query about the government’s ongoing reforms, he replied that institutions in the country had degenerated because they were politicised with rampant nepotism, favoritism and violations of merit.

He said that the country was passing through a transitional period and the reforms would take some time to bear fruition.

“When you introduce such reforms or take corrective measures against a rotten system, generally there has been resistance,” he said, adding the government was confronting all such things as for good governance there should be an efficient delivery system.

The foreign minister said that the government had faced enormous and acute economic challenges as the country was heading towards default.

“If the government had not signed agreements with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) where would have been the country now,” he wondered.

Responding to a question, he said that the government and the army were on the same page and they enjoyed intense coordination and support on the foreign policy, which was not a case in the past.