By Agha Iqrar Haroon
Islamabad, Pakistan: Parliament of Pakistan discarded new US policy for Afghanistan and South Asia on Wednesday but refrained from directing Foreign Office for any operational changes in its policy towards United States.
The both Houses of Parliament of Pakistan —the Senate and National Assembly rejected allegations leveled by US President Donald Trump against Islamabad for housing terrorists.
However, both Houses in their separate special sessions did not announce any operational change in foreign policy Pakistan follows towards United States.
Special sessions of both the Houses were called to discuss US-Pak relations in connection with newly announced US strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia.
US-Pakistan Foreign relations are around six decades old and Pakistan had been leading key role for as US partner in the region, particularly for dealing Afghan issue since 40 years. However, in August 21 speech, the US President Donald Trump sent a strong message to Pakistan that Islamabad was no more a strategic partner of United States in South Asia and arch-rival of Pakistan—India would lead South Asia as newly US-assigned leader of the region. Trump categorically said that India would play major role at US-Afghan stage.
Important points discussed in both Houses of Parliament of Pakistan and its recommendations are here below:
- There is no political divide in Pakistan in rejecting statement of US President Donald Trump regarding new US strategy for South-Asia and Afghanistan
- Pakistan should review its Foreign Policy keeping in view its National Interests and the changing geopolitical situation
- Pakistan is not responsible for US failure in Afghan war
- US strategies of using power and have failed in Afghanistan
- Pakistan is not housing terrorists rather it is biggest victim of terrorism in the region
- Chairman Senate and Speaker National Assembly will write letters to their US counterparts asking them to form for a committee of US-Pak parliamentarians, diplomats and military Personnel to check ground realities in connection with US failure in Afghan war and allegation against Pakistan for housing terrorists
- Pakistan has been trying to establish peace and stability in neighbouring Afghanistan because instability in Afghanistan is hampering peace within Pakistan since last 40 years
- Involvement of India in Afghanistan will create more instability in region
- US did not give billions of dollars in aid to Pakistan as claimed by US President Trump in his speech rather economy of Pakistan suffered an enormous loss of over $123 billion in war against terrorism since year 2001.
- Houses condemn US policy of disregarding sacrifices Pakistan paid in countering terrorism in the region
- National Assembly acknowledged sacrifices of the security forces of Pakistan in their counter terrorism operations through a special resolution
- Another resolution passed by National Assembly called speech of US President Trump and statements of US General Nicholson as “hostile and threatening”
- Foreign Office will have interactive sessions with diplomats of friendly countries to explain what sacrifices Pakistan had offered for peace in the region
- Parliament expressed concern over increasing concentration of ISIS in Afghan provinces bordering Pakistan
- Afghan Government must take action leaderships of terror groups Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and Jamat-ul-Ahrar as both organisations are conducting terror actions against Pakistan while living in Afghan soil.
- US, NATO and Afghan Government must deny India for using Afghan soil to conduct terrorist attacks against Pakistan
- The report of Senate Whole Committee will be sent to all embassies and high commissions of Pakistan in different countries for conveying message of Pakistani parliament with international community regarding baseless allegations leveled by US President Trump against Pakistan
It may be mentioned that report of Senate Whole Committee shows response of Senate of Pakistan towards baseless allegations US President leveled against Pakistan of housing terrorists. Senate Whole Committee met worked on report in two special sessions for writing policy guidelines for diplomats of Pakistan.
It may be mentioned that Senate’s “Committee of the Whole” is the entire membership of the House sitting as a committee to discuss issues of National importance.