Only democracy can keep Pakistan strong: Qureshi

Foreign minister says the government isn’t scared of Azadi March

Our Correspondent October 27, 2019
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. PHOTO: ANADOLU/FILE

KHANEWAL: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that no other system other than democracy can keep Pakistan strong, ruling out any possibility of a non-democratic setup in the country in the wake of opposition’s anti-government protests.

“The government is not scared of Azadi March,” he said while addressing the inaugural ceremony of Khanewal-Abdul Hakim section of Motorway (M-4) at Shamkot on Sunday. The foreign minister said that the opposition could exercise its democratic right of protest, but that should be within the boundaries of law.

He said the protesters should not cause damage to the public and private properties, lockdown and blockage of traffic. He said that the government is not afraid of protests and believes in responding to every allegation in a democratic way.

“All political parties are unanimous on 1973’s Constitution, which is a good omen … this is the beginning of an era of political maturity in Pakistan,” he remarked.

'Azadi march': Protesters led by Maulana Fazl set out for Islamabad

Commenting on the Kashmir issue, the foreign minister said the world has rejected the Indian viewpoint on Kashmir, adding that international human rights organisations are expressing solidarity with the people of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

Lauding Prime Minister Imran Khan for highlighting the Kashmir issue at international fora powerfully, Qureshi said the dispute was discussed at multiple platforms including the UN Security Council after a gap of 54 years.

He said that Prime Minister Imran would inaugurate Kartarpur Corridor on November 9 to entertain 5,000 Sikh pilgrims daily without visa. He said that the government was also planning to attract Buddhist pilgrims in the country, in the next phase of its religious tourism policy.

The foreign minister said that opening of Abdul Hakeem section on M-4 would help improve business and transportation in the region. He said that south Punjab would benefit more after opening of the Multan-Sukkur motorway.

(With additional input from APP)

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