Pakistan will not take any dictation from any country for its role in region: FM

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ISLAMABAD : Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif has categorically stated that Pakistan will not take any dictation from any power or country vis-à-vis its role in the region but this will be guided by the national interests.

Responding to the questions of members in National Assembly on Thursday, he said Pakistan will continue its efforts to achieve peace both on its eastern and western borders.

He regretted that in the past national interests were compromised but over the last three and four years, we have remained successful to align our role to the national interests. He said despite playing the role of facilitator for the US for so long, Pakistan over the past few months has got nothing but accusations in return.

The Foreign Minister said that a meeting of the parliamentary committee on national security chaired by the speaker is expected to be held on the 1st of next month to discuss the situation arising out of the US President Donald Trump’s tweet.

The Foreign Minister said Pakistan believes that peace and stability in Afghanistan is in the best interest of Pakistan. He said the only solution to Afghan conflict lies in a politically negotiated settlement that is owned and led by Afghans.

Reacting to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan’s anti-parliament comments, Khawaja Asif said every the opposition has the right to criticize the government but on one is allowed to abuse the parliament.

He said that the opposition leaders who had openly cursed the parliament during rally on Lahore’s Mall Road should be summoned to appear before the National Assembly to explain their remarks.

“This House has never seen such shameful conduct,” he added. “If those who derive their strength from the parliament curse it, then all others institutions will lose respect for it,” the minister said, adding that “those who are members of this House and want to become the prime minister have insulted it.”

Parliamentary secretary for Commerce and Textile Shaza Fatima said that exports have witnessed an increase of about 11 percent in the first six month of fiscal year. She expressed the confidence that the incentives given by the government to the exporters will further bolster exports in the years to come.

She however admitted that Pakistani exports are facing many challenges like low market diversification and lack of introduction of modern technology by the business community.

She said the government is taking various measures to reduce the cost of production and enhance competitiveness of Pakistani products in the international markets.

The National Assembly today passed a resolution denouncing in strongest terms the insulting language used by PTI Chairman Imran Khan and Chief of Awami Muslim League Sheikh Rashid Ahmad in yesterday’s public gathering in Lahore.

The resolution moved by Minister for Education Baligh-ur-Rehman said the two leaders who themselves are members of the parliament through their derogatory language tried to hurt the sanctity of the constitutional and sacred institution.

It said that the parliament is the representative institution of two hundred million proud people of Pakistan. In fact by using the abusive language, the two leaders tried to insult the people of the country which is condemnable.

Rising on a point of order, the foreign minister strongly regretted the insulting language used by PTI Chairman Imran Khan against parliament in yesterday’s public meeting in Lahore.

Khawaja Muhammad Asif said one may resort to harsh criticism against the government or the individuals but nobody could be allowed to attack the supreme institution of parliament.

He said the PPP and the PML (N) have given huge sacrifices for the democracy and it is our responsibility to protect the sanctity of the parliament.

In his remarks, Leader of Opposition Khurshid Shah condemned the abusive language used against the parliament by the PTI Chairman. He said those criticizing the parliament have no future in politics.

Orignally published by NNI

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