'How can Pakistan maintain neutrality with Iran, Saudi Arabia?'

Published: April 6, 2017

HYDERABAD: Milli Yakjahti Council (MYC) chief Sahibzada Abul Khair Muhammad Zubair has rejected the foreign office’s justification over former army chief General (retd) Raheel Sharif’s joining of the Saudi-led 41-nation military coalition.

“When the government of Iran is expressing apprehensions over Pakistan’s joining of the military coalition, then how can the foreign secretary [Tehmina Janjua] say that the teaming up isn’t against the interests of Iran?” Zubair, who also heads Jamiat-i-Ulema-i-Pakistan (JUP), questioned in a statement.

In a briefing to the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs on Tuesday, Janjua tried to allay concerns with regards to Iran’s objection. She said the alliance has been made to combat terrorism rather than any specific country.

Saudi-led alliance not aimed against any country: Tehmina

“How can she be right [about justifying the coalition] when Muslim countries like Iraq, Iran, Syria, Azerbaijan and others are not part of this military grouping?” he asked. The MYC chief questioned how Pakistan could maintain neutrality vis-a-vis its relations with Saudi Arabia and Iran after jumping on the bandwagon of this alliance.

“How can the foreign secretary guarantee that the move will not turn our army against Iran? Has our government made the alliance agree to our terms and conditions in this regard [Iran]? If it’s not done then how can we not follow the decisions jointly made by the coalition?” he further questioned.

Zubair said the government should have considered the Parliament’s resolution on Yemen before allowing Gen Sharif to head the alliance. “We already have enemies in our neighbourhood. We shouldn’t lose our friendly neighbours.”

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Reader Comments (5)

  • akhlaq hussain
    Apr 6, 2017 - 11:13AM

    ofcourse it will be difficult for pakistan to balance between Iran and Saudia.Recommend

  • Master
    Apr 6, 2017 - 2:08PM

    ask Moulana ,did iran asked pakistan before making defence agreement with india in 2002?
    did iran asked pakistan before making chah bahar port with our sworn enemy india?
    we are also free to pursuit our national interestsRecommend

  • Prabhjyot singh madan
    Apr 7, 2017 - 6:44PM

    Which elected leader of Pakistan and I mean “elected” leader was conferred their highest award to a Pakistani. All were generals, now follow the Chinese and become their colony. Less said and it is better. Rab rakhaRecommend

  • Prabhjyot singh madan
    Apr 7, 2017 - 6:50PM

    Only a matter of time , Pakistan armed forces will get into the mid east mess. Long live cpec, we Indians hail it. No criticism. Enjoy it. Rab rakha. Iran is your immediate neighbour and you antagonised it. There goes Iran too. Those who are on a path to destroy themselves, economically or by military, we Indians have to just watch it and feel pity for the innocent civilians there. Recommend

  • Shabir Hussain
    May 23, 2017 - 3:13PM

    Iran is our immediate neigbor and therefore more important. Which Islam promotes a monarchy where one family has all the power.

    Saudis money has done more harm than good for our country, Their wahabi beliefs are non inclusive and promote war and intolerance. There were no suicide bombers and even one hundredth as many attacks on other muslims before the madrasas. Recommend

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