KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday, terming the ongoing religious persecution of Muslims all over the world the ‘worst in human history’, said answer to the grave problem is a collective and firm voice by the Islamic countries.
“The only solution is that Muslims must come together on something like what is happening in Mayanmar and Kashmir, when someone is only being persecuted because of their religion,” the prime minister said at International Affairs Forum on ‘Vision for Regional Peace and Security’ at the Malaysia’s Institute of Advanced Islamic Studies. “We don’t want the Muslim Ummah to come together to fight, but to protect the interests like any other community does,” he said.
He regretted that despite being a population of 1.3 billion, Muslims suffered all over the world, be it in Libya, Somalia, Syria, Iraq or Afghanistan, and termed it ‘a tale of disaster’. “The reason is that we have no voice and there is a total division amongst. We can’t even come together as whole on the OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation) summit meeting on Kashmir,” he said.
However, the prime minister praised his Malaysian counterpart Dr Mahathir Mohamad for taking an open stance on Kashmir despite threats by India to cut off import of palm oil. “A leader always has a belief system and an ideology, and that’s why we love and respect Mahathir,” he said.
The prime minister mentioned that no one in the western world can utter a single word against 12 million Jews because of them being a very cohesive, strong and influential community. Imran Khan said it is fortunate that the conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran is over, and expressed satisfaction that Pakistan played a part in reducing tensions between the two Muslim states. He said terrorism and religion have no linkage, and pointed out that Muslims face discriminatory treatment on the basis on this misconception.
Imran Khan said his vision for Pakistan was to bring the people out of poverty and fight the mafia involved in corruption. His government is making every effort to transform the country into a welfare state based on principles of compassion and rule of law, he added.
Imran Khan said numerous mafias in Pakistan, whether they are political or those involved in price hike, do not want the country to make progress by exerting their undue use of power. He said the reason why Pakistan could not achieve progress despite its God-given great potential is its journey without a proper vision. “The nations without a vision die as it is the key to keep them flourish and develop,” he added.
In response to a question if he had lost hope for reconciliation with India, the prime minister said, “Whenever there is a government in India which believes in prosperity and poverty alleviation, Pakistan will be the first to offer hand of friendship.”
Imran Khan emphasized that he wanted to emulate the ideologies of Pakistan’s founding and ideological fathers, including Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal, who dreamt of a tolerant, just and welfare state like that of Madina, which embodied all modern principles of justice and compassion. He said his government has launched several welfare projects for the uplift of poor people, including establishment of shelter homes.