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I do not see any threat to the government: Shahid Khaqan

15 December, 2017

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LONDON: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Thursday said there was no threat to the government and expressed confidence that it would complete its term.

“I do not see any threat to the government. Threats are always there, however, our government will have a smooth sailing with interim government to be formed in June,” Abbasi told reporters as he arrived in the city to hold meeting with the key leadership of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

The meeting was attended by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his children Maryam and Hassan, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif at the office of Hassan Nawaz.

The prime minister said the London meeting was previously scheduled and not meant to take any ‘specific’ decision.

About a statement by National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq that he was not sure if the assemblies would complete their term, Abbasi termed it his personal opinion. He added that he was ready to clear the apprehensions of the speaker, if he had any.

“I am not an astrologer … I hope it [the National Assembly] completes its constitutional term but I don’t foresee it happening,” Speaker Ayaz Sadiq had told a news channel a day earlier. “I feel something is about to happen … things are drastically different from 2002 and 2008,” he had said, in reference to the continuing political saga in the country following the ‘botched’ Faizabad crackdown as well as the situation arising after the release of the Model Town inquiry report.

The prime minister, who arrived in London from Turkey after attending the extraordinary meeting of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), said he conveyed Pakistan’s stance at the forum and hoped that the United States would review its decision to relocate its embassy in Jerusalem.

According to sources, important matters regarding current political scenario in the country were discussed in the meeting. The PML-N leaders also informed Nawaz Sharif regarding major developments in the country’s politics.

Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif in his interaction with media categorically said that the government would complete its term and the PML-N government would once again come into power. “InshaAllah, we will form government after winning the next general election,” he said, adding that the interim government would be formed for a period of 90 days.

He said that there was no chance of assemblies being dissolved, reiterating his stance that elections would take place in time.

On a question about Speaker Ayaz Sadiq’s remarks, Khawaja Asif said that he had only expressed concern over the ongoing situation in the country.

“There is no chance of assemblies being dissolved,” he said. “Elections will take place as per schedule.”

Kh Asif said that the elected government was quite stable and would definitely be able to tackle most of the issues facing the country by the end of its tenure in next few months. “Nawaz Sharif is fulfilling the promises he made to the country,” he said. “The government has executed majority of its agenda for the nation,” he added.

The foreign minister rejected the notion that special meetings were held with former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

The foreign minister also spoke about the sit-in protests and said that such protests take place across the country and never trouble any government. He said that the government was not worried about arbitration by an institution as far as dharnas were concerned.

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