A Saudi Arabia led coalition has launched air strikes against the Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen, claiming that by doing so they are “defending the legitimate government” of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Had who has himself fled to an unknown location after rebel forces advanced on the Southern city of Aden. An official of the rebels has warned that by attacking Yemen Saudi Arabia is risking a much wider war. Iran who is alleged to have backing the rebels also issued a statement saying that the strikes by Saudi-led coalition should stop immediately as they are against the sovereignty of Yemen.
Saudi Arabia on Thursday said that as many as five Muslim countries that include Egypt and Pakistan have expressed a desire to participate in the Saudi-led military coalition against the Houthi rebels. Egypt confirmed that they have indeed taken part in the strikes on Yemen alongside Saudi forces. United States has also said that they will provide “logistical and intelligence support” to the operation. Prime Minister adviser on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz confirmed that Saudi Arabia had contacted Pakistan to join the operation in Yemen.
Pakistan is facing a host of problems, including the challenge of militancy. The Pakistan Army is currently involved in the ongoing operation Zarb-e-Azb. An operation is also underway in Karachi against criminal elements by Rangers. At such a crucial stage Pakistan simply cannot afford to get embroiled in any conflict in the Middle East. There is also a danger that the flaring up of the conflict in Middle East could spill over to Pakistan which will have severe repercussions. Pakistan must remain neutral in this conflict and focus on fixing matters at home. The need of the hour is that Muslim counties sit on the dialogue table to resolve the issue in a peaceful manner, the infighting among Muslim countries is doing no favours to our great religion, Islam.