Several retired members of Pakistan’s national security establishment, including a former intelligence chief and a former foreign minister, attended a pan-Islamist seminar in Islamabad titled ‘Struggle for Unity of Ummah and Stability of Pakistan’.
Former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that there was a pressing need to unite the Ummah to overcome challenges being faced by Muslim countries.
Highlighting Islam’s virtues, he said that the Muslim world had no shortage of resources, adding that it only lacked unity which had so far held them back.
Stressing the need for visionary leadership, he said: “We have to strengthen the OIC.”
Qureshi was of the view that the government should stabilise the rapidly deteriorating national economy to strengthen the country.
Terming western interference in Pakistan the biggest cause of destabilisation, he said that a change had started taking place all over the Muslim world, adding that people in various Muslim countries wanted to have democratic governance and leaders in those countries should respect people’s wishes.
Former ISI chief General (retd) Hamid Gul said that America wanted to enter Pakistan via Afghanistan. “This war on terror is damaging our state,” Gul said.
He said that the country was not only being destabilised by “America’s debauchery, non-provision of fundamental rights and lack of education are also the contributing to the worsening situation”.
Addressing the participants, Ambassador of Palestine, Hazem Hussain Abu Shanab said that unity among the Muslims was the only way to free Palestine and Kashmir.
He claimed that if Pakistan joined hands with Palestine, it would take just a year to secure a separate state for Palestinians.
Other speakers, incuding prominent scholar Agha Murtaza Poya, Ijazul Haq, analyst Lt-Gen (retd) Abdul Qayyum and Gohar Ayub Khan, were of the view that the war on terror affected Pakistan badly because it could not get the due resources from America to fight against terror which is actually Pakistan’s war but of America.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 8th, 2011.
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