RAWALPINDI: Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has said that Pakistan would accept whatever decision Afghanistan makes after the pullout of American troops, scorning Indian role in the Afghan soil which it has used to organize terrorism against Pakistan.
He said India has left no option but to run away from Afghanistan.
Addressing a press conference in Rawalpindi, Sheikh Rasheed said peace in Afghanistan is imperative for regional security.
He said Pakistan, being a responsible state, has always desired peace in Afghanistan and would welcome any decision made by the Afghan people for their homeland.
The Interior Minister said that Pakistan would agree to any decision taken by Afghanistan. He said that Afghanistan had been fighting for half of the century. “Now new and suave Taliban have emerged. These Taliban do not sort things through gun barrel,” Mr Rashid said and added that it was vital for the whole region to settle affairs with Taliban through dialogue.
He urged the Kabul government and the Afghan Taliban to negotiate and find out a solution to the conflict that is acceptable to all the parties. “Taliban in Afghanistan now have changed,” the minister said and added now they understand that peace can only be achieved through dialogues.
He was of the opinion that no Chinese and Iranian investment could be done without the restoration of peace in Afghanistan. The Uzbekistan train project is linked with the peace in Afghanistan, he added.
The interior minister stated that it was Islamabad’s desire that there would be peace in Afghanistan. He hoped that Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani, Abdullah Abdullah, former president Hamid Karzai and Mullah Baradar became one.
Rashid foresaw Pakistan, China, Russia and Iran in a changed region. “The situation in the region is going to be changed,” he added. He said that India had become butt of a joke in the region. He said that India had no choice but to retreat from Afghanistan.
“India has organized terrorism in Afghanistan against Pakistan and disseminated false news to the world against Pakistan,” he stated.
He maintained that Pakistan stood with rest of the world on the issue of peace in Afghanistan. He categorically denied to provide military/air bases to any country against Afghanistan. He said Prime Minister Imran Khan’s decision not to give bases was resolute. He said Pakistani nation also wanted that we would not become a tool in this matter. He denied any pressure on Pakistan in this regard.
Interior Minister Rashid stated that no superpower in the world could condone Pakistan. He opined that the government and Pakistan Army together would pave way for restoration of peace in Afghanistan.
On stranded people in Afghanistan, Mr Rashid said that vaccinated people would be allowed to cross into Pakistan through Torkham border. He said that Chaman and Torkham borders would remain open and FIA had been directed in this regard.
On the forthcoming Azad Jammu and Kashmir general elections, the interior minister predicted that Imran Khan was going to form government in the AJK on July 25. He said that PM Khan would highlight the Kashmir issue in the world.
On Maryam Nawaz’s election campaign in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, he objected to the language she was using terming it irresponsible.
On Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s electioneering in AJK, he remarked he was holding the CV of Mr Bilawal as the Bhutto scion was dear to him.
He was of the view that the day when the losing party conceded to its defeat that day the democracy would be strengthened. He said only the ‘Bat’ symbol would get maximum votes in the elections.
Rashid said that the whole world knew how many bank accounts, the opposition had opened.
He stated that Pak Army was the national Army of Pakistan and Tehreek-i-Insaaf was the national party of Pakistan. He said all political parties were with Pak Army. He maintained that all political parties were agreed with the Army during its briefing in the National Security Committee meeting a few days ago.
Predicting about the Azad Jammu and Kashmir elections, he said PTI will form the upcoming government and PM Khan will highlight the Kashmir issue at every forum.
He said Prime Minister Imran Khan is fighting the case of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir in the entire world. Replying to a question, the minister said Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz is giving irresponsible statements and she needs to reconsider her approach.