In what should be a wake up call for Pakistan government and its Army, a Pakistani newspaper known to be close to the establishment, has warned that international isolation is looming over the country. In a column in “The Nation”, a writer in the newspaper says that Pakistan’s attempts to convince allies of the country’s ‘non-discriminatory’ approach towards terrorists has only elicited criticism. Commenting on PM Narendra Modi’s statement at BRICS Summit where he indirectly referred to Pakistan as a ‘mother-ship of terrorism’, the newspaper says, “Modi’s statement shows just how committed New Delhi is when it comes to isolating Pakistan globally”. “From cancelling the Saarc summit to boycotting Pakistani artistes, the Modi regime is hell-bent on weakening Pakistan at every international forum,” it notes.
Slamming Pakistan government for its recent actions on Dawn reporter Cyril Almeida, the paper says, “Instead of clarifying its stance on non-state actors, however, the federal government placed the name of the reporter of the story, Cyril Almeida, on Exit Control List.” While admitting that Almeida’s name has now been removed from the ECL, the column attacks the Pakistan government for its ‘immaturity’ in dealing with the situation and calling the Dawn story of a rigt between the establishment and military, a threat to national security.
The column also notes the recent statements by Rana Muhammad Afzal, a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) MP who had questioned the gains Pakistan is getting from harbouring terrorists. “Which eggs is Hafiz Saeed laying for us that we are nurturing him?” is the straight question that he had asked the Nawaz Sharif government. “The efficacy of our foreign policy speaks for itself when we couldn’t curtail Hafiz Saeed. India has built such a case against us about the JuD chief that during the meeting on Kashmir, foreign delegates mention him [Hafiz Saeed] as the bone of contention between Pakistan and India,” he reportedly said during a meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs. The lawmaker has said the JuD chief was considered a “notorious” character in internationally.
“The Nation” adds that Pakistan needs to clearly define its policies and act on them as well. “Pakistan has to realise that what really is in its national interest is the complete elimination of nefarious elements, without any discrimination; the civil and military brass should at least have the decency to admit that Pakistan still isn’t 100 per cent sure which non-state actor is good or bad,” it says. The column also warns Pakistan that the increasing admonitions from the US do not bode well. It also adds that China too has expressed concerns. “When and if isolated, the impact would be drastic, and Pakistan would never want that,” the column concludes.
Tensions between India and Pakistan have been mounting after the Uri terrorist attack that killed 19 Indian soldiers. In a strong retaliation, India has not only moved to internationally isolate Pakistan, but has also carried out surgical strikes across the LoC to destroy multiple terrorist launch pads.