Use of force against Syria must be avoided: FO
30 August, 2013
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday expressed concern over the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria and said the use of force against the country should be avoided.
"Pakistan as non-permanent member of the Security Council of the United Nations is of the view that the sovereignty and integrity of Syria must be respected and there should be no foreign interference in Syria," Foreign Office spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry said at his weekly press briefing.
He said the United Nations investigating team is in Syria to probe the use of chemical weapons and the international community should wait for the outcome of this investigation before taking any action.
The spokesman said Adviser on National Security Sartaj Aziz will take the parliament into confidence over the situation in Syria and the Line of Control (LoC).He termed the recent visit of Afghan President Hamid Karzai as successful.
"Pakistan has taken a principled stance of fully supporting the Afghan peace and reconciliation process and these sentiments were assured to President Karzai by Pakistani leadership during his recent visit to Pakistan," Aizaz Chaudhry said.
"Pakistan also supported the Doha talks," he added.He said Pakistan further believes that the reconciliation process must be led by Afghans themselves. "We will facilitate in whatever manner we can and have a genuine interest in seeing lasting peace in Afghanistan since peace in Afghanistan will usher peace in our region," said the spokesman.
To a question, he said Pakistan and India are engaged in track-II diplomacy to move forward for resolution of the outstanding issues.Referring to the approval by the federal cabinet of signing of Council of Europe Convention on the transfer of sentenced persons to facilitate the repatriation of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, the spokesman said the government is making sincere efforts to transfer Dr Aafia, to complete her sentence in Pakistan.
He said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Interior jointly pursued the signing of Council of Europe Convention with United States and other countries.He said the US had not yet approached Pakistan for the transfer of Dr Shakil Afridi.
The spokesman said Sartaj Aziz is likely to represent Pakistan in the forthcoming meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
He said the SCO is an important organisation playing useful role in the region. He said Pakistan is seeking permanent membership to the SCO and will remain engaged with the organisation.Answering another question, the spokesman said visit of the members of Judicial Commission to India regarding investigating in Mumbai attack is on the record but its dates have not been finalised.
The spokesman said first ever strategic dialogue between Pakistan and Russian Federation is going on in Moscow and Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani is leading Pakistan's delegation.He said the two sides are exchanging views on political, economic and defence areas besides discussing regional and international issues.On the issue of death penalty in Pakistan, the spokesman said Pakistan has been maintaining moratorium on the issue of death penalty for last some years and it will continue.