Pakistan will not send ground troops for Saudi-led anti-terror alliance: Sartaj Aziz

Published: January 12, 2016
A file photo of Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz. PHOTO: AFP

A file photo of Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz. PHOTO: AFP

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s senior aide Sartaj Aziz said on Tuesday that Pakistan will not send ground troops for the Saudi-led anti-terror alliance, Express News reported.

“Saudi Arabia has neither asked Pakistan for ground troops nor will Pakistan send any,” Aziz said, while speaking to media representatives.

Saudi-led coalition: Pakistan won’t support moves against Syria or Iran, say officials

“Sending our troops to any country is against our policy. Pakistan never sends its forces for any coalition apart from the United Nations,” the premier’s top aide added.

However, the adviser said that Pakistan will keep on sharing intelligence and send arms and ammunition to the Kingdom whenever required.

The statement came following recent visits by Saudi defence minister and foreign minister to Islamabad to discuss Pakistan’s role in the coalition.

Pakistan offers to defuse Saudi-Iran tensions

Pakistan on Sunday offered its ‘good offices’ to defuse tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran even as it supported the Saudi initiative to establish a coalition of likeminded Islamic states to counter terrorism and extremism. The offer came from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his meeting with Saudi Deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Prince Mohammad bin Salman, who visited Islamabad as part of the kingdom’s efforts to seek Pakistan’s backing for the recently formed Saudi-led coalition.

Mohammad bin Salman, who was the second high-level official from Saudi Arabia to visit Pakistan in three days, also held talks with army chief General Raheel Sharif at the GHQ in Rawalpindi. Earlier in the week, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed al Jubeir visited Islamabad.

The focus of the Saudi defence minister’s discussions both at the PM Office and GHQ was on securing Pakistan’s support for the Saudi move to cobble together a coalition of 34-nation Islamic countries as well as current tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Pakistan mulls over participation in Saudi-led military alliance

In December, Foreign Office officials had said that Pakistan may have joined the Saudi Arabia-led 34-nation coalition against terrorism, but it will not support any move that destabilises Syria or strains Islamabad’s relationship with Tehran. According to the officials, the assurance came from the federal government during an in-camera session of the Senate Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs. Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry attended the meeting presided over by committee chairperson Senator Nuzhat Sadiq.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (12)

  • Bilal
    Jan 12, 2016 - 6:07PM

    There was no need for such statement.Recommend

  • Farru
    Jan 12, 2016 - 6:08PM

    Thank you. Sending troops will be a suicide for Pakistan. Say no to Saudi / Iran adventures.

    Within 9 months of Yemen adventure, Pakistani policy makers must have realised how right they were when they said no Saudi demand of sending troops in Yemen. Recommend

  • Shaikh Mohommad
    Jan 12, 2016 - 6:17PM

    “Sending our troops to any country is against our policy. Pakistan never sends its forces for any coalition apart from the United Nations,” the premier’s top aide added. Haven’t Pakistan Army learnt their lesson from their sojourn in Mogadishu when 23 Pakistani Soldiers were killed in June 1993? We should emphatically not support Saudi Arabia’s adventure in Yemen. Will the Army listen?Recommend

  • Jan 12, 2016 - 6:56PM

    Hi hope they will not change this decision .Recommend

  • mirestan
    Jan 12, 2016 - 7:48PM

    All decisions like this should be decided in the Parlement. There is no kingship or dictator ship in pakistan.Recommend

  • Tyggar
    Jan 12, 2016 - 8:47PM

    Saudi should have requested for “non-state actors” from the Pakistani armyRecommend

  • Raj - USA
    Jan 12, 2016 - 9:53PM

    Sartaj Aziz says: “Sending our troops to any country is against our policy……”

    I tust him 100%. Pakistan will not send its troops. However, a lot of non-state actors will go to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan’s army will be facilitating this. Recommend

  • Jan 12, 2016 - 10:42PM

    super duper decision, we endorse 1000 times. Recommend

  • Woz Ahmed
    Jan 13, 2016 - 12:01AM

    In case my last comment is not published, what about Black September in Jordan ?Recommend

  • Vikram
    Jan 13, 2016 - 1:26AM

    Pakistanis will do any thing if they can make some money.Recommend

  • Muslim First
    Jan 13, 2016 - 7:41AM

    This is betrayal of trust and brotherhood.Recommend

  • Asaf
    Jan 13, 2016 - 8:16AM

    These statements about ‘no military involvement’ are for public consumption ONLY. Pakistan cannot refuse this as it is not a request but a demand from a dependable benefactor. The benefactor who never cared about the negative effects of its convoluted ideology on Pakistan.The ideology which had practically destroyed Pakistan not in physical but social sense. The decades old petro dollar dependency, not only in civil but military spheres, can not be wished away just by public pronouncements. By the way, ‘no military involvement’ does not preclude deployment of ‘non state actors’. Be careful people, don’t believe everything they tell you! The nation had been lied to too many times by its ideological caretakers in the past and this deception is not going to go away very soon. Pakistan deserves better. Asaf.Recommend

More in Pakistan