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US, not Pakistan, being isolated, Imran tells Nawaz

29 December, 2013

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan expressed shock and disappointment over Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's statement that the PTI's drone protest was isolating Pakistan.

In a statement issued here, he reminded the premier that the PML-N along with the PPP had not only been a party to the parliamentary resolutions (present and previous) against drones but also party to the anti-drone resolution in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provincial assembly.

In these resolutions, he continued, the blockade of Nato supplies was specifically mentioned. In addition, the PML-N convened the APC in which its government was given a mandate to commence a dialogue for ending drone strikes by the US in Pakistan.

Imran pointed out that when he had asked the PM in the APC what would happen if the US sabotaged the peace process with a drone attack, he was assured by the PM that his government would take up the issue not only with the US but would also go to the UN.

"The government has so far neither taken up the issue forcefully with the US nor moved the UNSC under Chapter VII which is where binding action is decided against aggression," he noted.

Unfortunately, he alleged, the PML-N was following the PPP's habit of duplicity on drones and deceiving the people of Pakistan by covertly supporting the US drone attacks. Zardari's latest speech also revealed the 'muk muka' between the PPP and PML-N as both seek to protect their particularistic interests, especially the financial ones overseas.

Imran pointed out that it was not 'isolation' the PML-N and PPP were worried about but the security of their assets stashed abroad. He said that leaders who kept their assets overseas could not be expected to safeguard the interests of their people and secure their country's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

He stressed that the PTI was committed to continuing its blockade of Nato supplies until the federal government got a solid assurance from the US of an end to drone strikes. "It is a matter of reasserting the nation's sovereign dignity and self respect without which no other nation will respect us. No nation is isolated because it asserts its right to its sovereignty, dignity and self respect," Imran said.

A clear example of this, he noted, was right in the neighbourhood, where India asserted its sovereignty and became one of only three countries that opposed the passage of the CTBT resolution in the UNGA (Bhutan and Libya being the other two countries) in September 1996. Yet no one said India was isolated. And now India was standing up against the US in a row over the treatment of an Indian diplomat.

"Pakistan is not isolated at all because of PTI's opposition to drone attacks. In fact it is the US that is isolated on drone attacks, including at the UN. If the PML-N government implements the APC mandate the US isolation on drones would be complete; but sadly the prime minister is continuing the Zardari tradition of doublespeak on drones, allowing the US to attack Pakistan with drones against all international and humanitarian laws," he noted.


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