Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – Minister for Foreign Affairs, Khawaja Muhammad Asif has said that Pakistan will never compromise its national security, integrity, and dignity.

Winding up a discussion on recent visit of the US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson to Pakistan in the Senate on Wednesday, he assured the House that Pakistan’s foreign policy will be evolved in light of the guidance from the parliament and other stakeholders and it will never be shaped under any foreign influence.

Beginning his speech with an acknowledgement of Trump’s assertion that “things have started getting better” in US-Pakistan relations, and thanking the American president for the endorsement, Asif reiterated that Pakistan wishes for a regional solution to the Afghan problem.

“The entire region has a role to play in the Afghan process, and Pakistan wishes for a regional solution to the security challenges faced by the country,” he asserted.

“We will use the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) platform to Pakistan’s benefit, and we have been very active there,” he assured.

He said that it has been made clear on the United States that there is no military solution to Afghan situation, and India’s role in the region as policeman is unacceptable.

The foreign minister also called for regional solution to the Afghan issue and urged the regional countries to evolve a regional strategy for peace in the area.

“The Americans have devised a framework for their policy for South Asia, which is in fact focused on Afghanistan. It was devised by generals who have struggled in Afghanistan for the last 15 years. I do not think any policy can be made by people with that baggage and mindset,” he said.

“I made this clear both in America and in Pakistan, and continue to do so on media,” he asserted.

He said he had urged the US State Department or other policy-making institutions of the country to take greater control of the American policy “instead of relying on President Trump’s rejected approach to this problem.”

“If America frames its policy free from the influence [of these generals], it will be much more successful and effective. When they make Pakistan the scapegoat, they are in fact covering their own failures [in Afghanistan],” he repeated.

“I am saying this very ‘wittingly’,” he said.