Domestic issues caused Imran's ouster not US: Russian envoy

Says if Imran didn’t have domestic issues he would have remained head of govt despite 'US conspiracy'

News Desk February 16, 2023
Russian Ambassador to Pakistan Danila Ganich during an interview with a private TV channel. SCREENGRAB

Russian Ambassador to Pakistan Danila Ganich said Pakistan’s domestic issues caused Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan's ouster and not the United States.

Talking to a private news channel, the envoy on the topic of domestic politics said when the US “asked Imran to wind up his Russian visit and when he refused to do so, that definitely irritated the White House”.

He furthered that this is “factor” that led to Imran’s ouster but was not the cause, adding that the PTI chairman “defended the respect and the authority of the Pakistani state” by refusing to wind up the visit.

When asked if Moscow believes that it was the US that hatched a conspiracy in Pakistan to start a no-confidence motion against Imran that eventually led to his ouster, Ganich reiterated that “this is a factor contributing to the ouster… there were some problems inside the country already and inside the parliament”.

Read Imran's politics 'based on lies', says PM Shehbaz

“I think the primary cause for the domestic change and development were domestic but of course when the US is dissatisfied with someone, it creates problems but it isn’t the decisive factor,” the ambassador said.

Ganich added that if the former premier didn’t have domestic issues he would have remained the head of the government despite the "US conspiracy".

The envoy added that Imran was unaware of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, adding that had he known “he wouldn’t have come to Russia”.

While talking about Pakistan's gas project with Russia, he said the project was high on the agenda of a meeting recently held in Islamabad. However, the signing of the project depends on some commercial agreements.

When asked if Moscow's closeness to Islamabad will lead to eyebrows being raised in Washington, he said that there is no fear and that Russia has decided to confront the US directly and openly.

Read More Imran praised for highlighting Kashmir issue in DW interview

“We don’t fear anybody, including the United States,” he added.

However, he said the US is a superpower and has an influence worldwide.

While talking about trading in the Russian ruble, the envoy said that he hopes that happens because the US has weaponised the US dollar to preserve hegemony and control over transactions.

“If we want to be independent of Washington, we got to think about using national currencies or regional currencies,” he added.

He also said that Russia is working with the Afghan Taliban, adding that it is monitoring the Afghan issue.

“If the Kabul authorities were stronger, they could deal with the TTP [Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan] much more efficiently… we need to help the Taliban to increase their counter-terrorism capabilities,” he added.


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