Trump's statement on Dr Afridi shows his ignorance about Pakistan: Chaudhry Nisar

Published: May 3, 2016
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PHOTO: REUTERS

PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: The federal interior minister has said that Pakistan’s courts will decide the fate of a tribal areas doctor who had helped the American CIA track and kill al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in his Abbottabad compound in 2011.

Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan’s statement came a day after US Republican front-runner Donald Trump said in a Fox News interview that if elected, he would free Dr Shakeel Afridi in ‘two minutes’. Asked how would he do that? Trump said: “I would tell them [Pakistanis] let him out and I’m sure they would let him out.”

Five years on, Dr Shakil Afridi languishes in jail

The Republican front-runner plans to leverage US aid, “because we give a lot of aid to Pakistan. We give a lot of money to Pakistan.”

Nisar took strong exception to Trump’s comments about Pakistan in general and Afridi in particular. “Shakeel Afridi is a Pakistani citizen, and nobody else has the right to dictate us his future,” he said. “Trump’s perception and his comments about Pakistan [in the interview] are highly misplaced and unwarranted.”

The interior minister said Pakistan was not a colony of the United States. “He [Trump] should learn to treat sovereign states with respect,” he added.

Shakil Afridi’s fate to be decided by Pakistani courts: Nisar

Nisar said Trump seemed to be ignorant of the huge sacrifices Pakistan and its people have rendered while supporting US policies over the years.

“The peanuts the US has given us in return should not be used to threaten or browbeat us into following Trump’s misguided vision of foreign policy,” he said. “Trump’s statement shows not only his insensitivity but also his ignorance about Pakistan.”

Published in The Express Tribune, May 3rd, 2016.

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Reader Comments (14)

  • S.R.H. Hashmi
    May 3, 2016 - 9:37AM

    Responding to Trump’s boast of getting Shakeel Afridi out of prison in two minutes, Chaudhry Nisar said “Contrary to Trump’s misconception, Pakistan is not a colony of the United States., He should learn to treat sovereign countries with respect”.

    Now, Chaudhry Nisar ought to know that respect is earned and not demanded and that political independence is unthinkable without economic independence .And Pakistan fails on both counts. A country living on loans, raising loans to repay loans and needing US influence with international lenders is hardly in a position to defy the US.

    These are our greedy, inept and corrupt politicians who have brought this mineral-rich country to this sorry state. And a leadership which is held in utter contempt by its own people – and Panama Papers have only worsened the situation – can hardly command respect abroad.

    So, this posturing by Chaudhry Nisar sounds rather unconvincing, even more so when his own wife and children happen to be US nationals. And that makes Chaudhry Nisar more of an expatriate in Pakistan.

    And it is not much different even with other PML-N top leadership, with nearly all having their home, heart, health (care) and wealth outside Pakistan.

    KarachiRecommend

  • PrakashG
    May 3, 2016 - 11:13AM

    Here is what US needs to do to get Dr. Afridi released:
    1. Award US citizenship to Dr. Afridi
    2. Get the treason charge upgraded to murder charge (e.g. collusion in murder of OBL)
    3. Pay blood money to one of the wives of OBL
    Win-win for everybody!Recommend

  • Babar Chaudy
    May 3, 2016 - 11:49AM

    I think the 2 minutes Donald Trump refers to is very possible. All he has to do is freeze the accounts of all these politicians including Mr. Nisar and boom Afridi will be a free man. Recommend

  • anon
    May 3, 2016 - 12:00PM

    Mr Nisar, you are partly right, Pakistan is not a US colony anymore, but on the way to becoming a Chinese one……Recommend

  • vinsin
    May 3, 2016 - 12:05PM

    What about his statements regarding trials on Bangladesh? If the aids that made up 40% of Pakistan GDP are peanuts then it should be return, match words with action.Recommend

  • Sunil
    May 3, 2016 - 12:32PM

    Who are you going to tun to? China is angry that Pakistan is not paying its share of CPEC, you want to flex your muscle when you can’t pay your way !!! You can’t even match the $50 billion defense budget of India and want to carry on fighting through proxies. Learn a lesson or two and try looking after your people. Stop lecturing us on toilets etc, at least we have the money to build them and are electrifying all our villages, we are a fifth of the way through. I will say I personally want the destruction of occupied India (Pakistan and Bangladesh), just like you want Israel destroyed, I am patient that is the difference.Recommend

  • SKS
    May 3, 2016 - 2:00PM

    I dont know how Ch.Nisar utters all these comical sentences. He puts a bravado front while accepting US aid and his grouse is that USA is paying peanuts. Therefore if USA pays enough, his country is ready to be a colony. Were you co-operating whole-heartedly with USA when they were paying enough? And why are cooperating with Chinese, even though they dont give you a single penny free? Do you know there is something called gratitude for all the money received? Pity of the people who have to bear these comics. Also God save the neighbours.Recommend

  • M.S.
    May 3, 2016 - 2:41PM

    This man cried like a baby on Hakim-ullah’s death and his family members are US citizens. This is the double standard which America’s don’t understand.Recommend

  • OSD
    May 3, 2016 - 3:22PM

    Haha.. The “Donald” lacks respect for his own countrymen, let alone other countries of the world. Why respond to that entertainer, Ch sahib?Recommend

  • tazia
    May 3, 2016 - 4:20PM

    ‘You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.’

    Winston S. ChurchillRecommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    May 3, 2016 - 4:59PM

    Decision is in the hands of the forces which matter most. The fact is that President Obama did not put pressure on Pakistan while many congressmen tried hard to get freedom for Afridi.. Now congress has shown its power by refusing to pay for F16s, our real decision makers will take it seriously and let doctor go as it did in case of Raymond Davis.Recommend

  • Mussa
    May 3, 2016 - 5:32PM

    Mr. Hashmi…well said. Choudry Niisar is no position to demand respect. It is earned. Pakistan seeking financial assistance from all over the world and then these politicians moving these funds overseas is highly shameful and Trump knows that too.Recommend

  • OSD
    May 4, 2016 - 1:31AM

    @Ch. Allah Daad: your point is plausible but the situation seems to be different this time around. Dr Shakeel is a Pakistani and his act embarrasses the army, which is a powerful force even by American standards. With regards to the blocking of F-16 deal, the USA is interested in India because of China. They will find another excuse even if dr afridi is let go.Recommend

  • jun
    May 6, 2016 - 6:47AM

    @Sunil: I enjoyed your lecture on Pakistan.No doubt,an economy,population which is not even one tenth of India,you are comparing a 5 years old kid with a 50years old man.India with your socalled 50 billion budget,why it still owes Iran 8 billion,and few hundred billions to World bank?Is all the paper supposed to be used to manufacture toilet paper has been used up?Or it preserved and kept for use in the future to print out ruppees,when thousand,million population would be asked to collect from slum-trash?Pakistan has many problems,so does India.Comparing an elephant with a ant?But a bold one.and a nuclear ant.Please give some creditRecommend

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