Pakistan 'examining' Saudi request over Yemen intervention

Published: March 26, 2015
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Foreign Office Spokesperson Tasnim Aslam. PHOTO: EXPRESS

Foreign Office Spokesperson Tasnim Aslam. PHOTO: EXPRESS

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan confirmed on Thursday it is currently examining Saudi Arabia’s request to provide assistance to overcome the on-going crisis in Yemen.

“The Saudi request to become part of its coalition against Yemeni rebels is currently being examined,” Foreign Office Tasnim Aslam said, during her weekly press briefing in Islamabad.

The request was said to be made during Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recent visit to Saudi Arabia where he was accorded an unprecedented welcome.

Riyadh is increasingly worried over the advances made by Houthi rebels in Yemen as it fears that they can infiltrate into the Kingdom.

Earlier today, Saudi Arabia said five Muslim countries, including Egypt and Pakistan, want to participate in the Gulf-led military coalition against Huthi rebels who have seized large swathes of Yemen.

Read: Saudi says Pakistan wants to join fight against Yemen rebels

“The Pakistani community in Yemen has been alerted in view of the current situation there. No decision, however, has so far been taken to shut down the embassy,” Aslam added.

Further, Aslam said Pakistan embassy in Yemen has been asked to remain alert for evacuation of Pakistani community in case the situation further deteriorates.

Together with Jordan, Morocco and Sudan, they have “expressed desire to participate in the operation” against the rebels, which the kingdom dubbed “Firmness Storm”, Saudi SPA state news agency said.

Saudi Arabia and four other Gulf states, including Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, announced earlier a decision to “answer the call of President Hadi to protect Yemen and his people from the aggression of the Huthi militia.”

Aslam insisted that Pakistan has always played a positive role in creating unity among the Muslim ‘Ummah.’ She further said Islamabad was against creating divisions in the Muslim world on the sectarian lines.

The decision on committing troops for Saudi Arabia is tricky one as this may have negative implications in terms of Islamabad’s ties with neighboring Tehran.

Indian case against Hurriyat leader

Responding to a question regarding the registration of a case by India against Hurriyat leader Asiya Andrabi for singing Pakistan’s national anthem, the spokesperson said, “The registration of case against the Hurriyat leader reinforces that the people in Occupied Kashmir are being subjected to suppression and denied the right to express their views and sentiments.”

Further, the spokesperson said, “Future of the territory is to be decided by the people of Jammu and Kashmir through exercise of free and fair plebiscite as guaranteed by the UN Security Council resolutions.”

Read: No place for Hurriyat in peace talks, India tells Pakistan

Switching focus to the Samjhota train attack case, she said the bereaved Pakistani families still await justice despite lapse of so many years.

Chinese president’s visit

Aslam said the dates of the Chinese president’s visit will be announced simultaneously in Beijing and Islamabad.

“During the visit, the two sides will review the whole gamut of bilateral relations as well as regional and international matters of common interests.”

She said the two countries will also sign some important agreements in order further cement the friendly and strategic relations.

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Reader Comments (22)

  • asif
    Mar 26, 2015 - 1:44PM

    It would be highly stupid of Pakistan to throw its lot in with the Saudis at this critical juncture.Recommend

  • jamal
    Mar 26, 2015 - 1:44PM

    Stay away from this US backed Saudi military action.Recommend

  • abreez
    Mar 26, 2015 - 1:47PM

    Pakistan must play neutral role in Middle East as tribal wars in the region very much on the horizon. This time different actors will fuel these wars, Pakistan must not play any role in Arab-Iran tussle, this tussle will benefit Pakistan ultimately.Recommend

  • Frank
    Mar 26, 2015 - 2:07PM

    Iran is wreaking havoc in the Sunni world. It has caused the deaths of nearly a quarter of a million people in Syria alone. We can’t just stand by and watch. It’s time to take action against Iranian imperialism, even if that means an alliance with Israel, before we become its next victims.Recommend

  • Umair Rasheed
    Mar 26, 2015 - 2:22PM

    Thankyou but no, we already have a lot on our plate with the operations in the tribal areas and in Karachi.
    And we dont want another neighbour going after us.Recommend

  • ajeet
    Mar 26, 2015 - 2:24PM

    Let the highest bidder win.Recommend

  • akram
    Mar 26, 2015 - 3:21PM

    Army should never hand over the fate of this country to either Nawaz or Zardari ever.Recommend

  • Troubled
    Mar 26, 2015 - 4:07PM

    @Frank:
    Are you aware that the Islam practiced by ISIS and the Saudi Kingdom are the same? And that’s ignoring the fact that ISIS was funded by the Saudis. Suicide bombers are nearly always Sunni. So stop being Netanyahu’s spokesperson and spreading false information. Recommend

  • woody
    Mar 26, 2015 - 4:16PM

    In case you forgot – your in the middle of a civil war. Many would argue that you should resolve your own civil war before meddling in another countries civil war.Recommend

  • Waqas Ahmad
    Mar 26, 2015 - 4:41PM

    @Frank you are looking at one side of the coin. Pakistan is already paying heavily for the decisions to firstly block the way of USSR in Afghanistan and then later the Taliban, and I am sure there is and there will be no one to value Pakistan’s stand eitherRecommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Mar 26, 2015 - 5:04PM

    When Pakistan is in trouble, Saudi Arabia never gives a second though. Shame on Pakistan government for taking so long. Recommend

  • JD
    Mar 26, 2015 - 5:08PM

    Time for us(awaam) to stop the generals and politicians that are on saudi payroll. We have to protest on the streets to let our voices get heard, otherwise their wrong decision will bring further misery to our country. We are already paying a heavy price for these sell-out generals and politicians wrong decisions. We cannot afford another big mistake.Recommend

  • woody
    Mar 26, 2015 - 5:20PM

    @jamal: This is a classic Sunni/Shia conflict – blaming the USA maybe popular in Pakistan but the USA isn’t the one asking Pakistan to commit troops to Yemen or any other country.Recommend

  • bajwa
    Mar 26, 2015 - 5:55PM

    Its a time Pakistan should respond to them in the same way they treat Pakistanis in their country. Let them beg and plead more. Recommend

  • Zubair Khan
    Mar 26, 2015 - 6:53PM

    For God sake do not get involved in the affairs of others. Do not become “Abdullah dewana in Prai shadi” Take care of of your home. Saudis are the main sponsor for all types of global terrorism. Let them to resolve their own issue. But I am sure my request will have deaf hearing as all Pakistani big shots are obedient servants of KSA.Recommend

  • Kashif
    Mar 26, 2015 - 7:33PM

    Can we request them to stop funding fanatics in Pakistan?Recommend

  • Is it true
    Mar 26, 2015 - 7:56PM

    @Frank:
    Where did you get your figures from?Recommend

  • Huzefa Rashid
    Mar 27, 2015 - 12:05AM

    Pakistan shouldn’t provide any assistance to saudi arab, we are already in dozens of problems of our own…Recommend

  • umi
    Mar 27, 2015 - 12:39AM

    Corrupt sold leaders of Pakistan will need to be stopped from participating along with corrupt fanatic saudis in further dividing and destroying peaceful world. Why they have been bribed with 1 billion dollars…. is clear now. Saudis must be driven put of Pakistan. Pakistan doesn’t need more havoc. Recommend

  • Sami
    Mar 27, 2015 - 7:58AM

    Pakistan will provide limited assistance to Saudi Arabia as kingdom stands with Pak in every difficult time and 1.5 million Pakistanis are living there. It is not good for Pakistan to decline their request.Recommend

  • Khurram
    Mar 27, 2015 - 9:41AM

    Its different what we wish to do and what are going to do…
    Yes its same as we consider that partnering with this imposed affairs is sin and we should stand up to irrational demands some day!
    Nicely it is already being announced about Pakistan willingness to be partner in crime
    I think its better to be part of the coalition and give it a wise resolve then witnessing another civil war in the neighborhood.Recommend

  • Brian
    Mar 29, 2015 - 2:04AM

    Gulf Arabs treat Pakistani workers like dirt. They want Pakistan together with Sudan and Egypt to do the ground fighting. Gulf Arab blood , too royal to spill. US and Israel meanwhile are encouraging these wars.Recommend

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