US ties: Efforts on to win back JUI-F

Government to convince the JUI-F chief to take part in proceedings of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security

Our Correspondent April 11, 2012

ISLAMABAD: The last stumbling block in redrafting terms of engagement with the United States, JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, was the centre of discussion at a late-night huddle of coalition partners at the Presidency on Tuesday.

The government decided to attempt once again to convince the JUI-F chief to take part in proceedings of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security. Earlier on Tuesday, Fazl also met with the US Ambassador Cameron Munter.

Presidency huddle

“We will try to build consensus and approach the opposition parties. An attempt at the highest level will be made to persuade Fazl to rejoin the process,” a participant of the meeting at the Presidency told The Express Tribune.

Ruling party’s Khurshid Shah briefed the meeting about backdoor contacts with the opposition, and the progress made so far, he said.

The JUI-F, however, has been adamant that it would not take part in the process.

“It has been decided that the JUI-F chief will be asked to put forward party’s recommendations”, another participant said. It is likely that President Zardari himself takes initiative and holds a meeting with Fazl in a day or two, he added.

The president also took the coalition partners into confidence over his visit to India on Sunday.

JUI-F chief’s meeting with Munter

In his effort to reach out to parties delaying the parliamentary review to reset ties with the US, Ambassador Cameron Munter met the JUI-F chief on Tuesday to convince him to abandon his opposition to the resumption of NATO supplies.

The meeting took place at the residence of the JUI-F leader and lasted close to an hour.

Last week, Munter, and some other diplomats from Nato coalition countries, also met PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif to discuss the delay in the parliamentary review. The party has also taken a hard-line position initially but has, since then, shown flexibility.

US Embassy spokesperson termed the meeting between Munter and the JUI-F chief as ‘cordial and constructive.’ He did not, however, say if the envoy explicitly requested the JUI-F chief to drop his opposition to the reopening of NATO supply lines.

Fazl, meanwhile, attempted to play down the hype surrounding the meeting, and insisted there was no ‘specific agenda.’
Published in The Express Tribune, April 11th, 2012.


MAD | 9 years ago | Reply

Aaaah so they're trying to buy him out. NO wonder the price of Diesel (and other petroleum products) is increasing.

Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ


Most Read