“Pakistan needs to build a self-sustaining economy,” he said, warning the country of the possible repercussions of aligning with a major power.
Islamabad’s former envoy to the United States, Husain Haqqani, has made a number of suggestions to Pakistan, which may not be welcomed in his country. Speaking to PTI, Haqqani said his country needs to decide its priority – to support terror suspect Hafiz Saeed or gain international credibility and respect. The ex-diplomat has also suggested that Pakistan should become a “trading nation” rather than a “warrior nation”. Also, the country should ensure it does not turn into China’s pawn, he said while stressing that Pakistan should not go from being dependent on the US to relying on China. “Pakistan needs to build a self-sustaining economy,” he said, warning the country of the possible repercussions of aligning with a major power.
Haqqani was in India last week for the launch of his new book ‘Reimagining Pakistan: Transforming a Dysfunctional Nuclear State’. The former envoy said Islamabad needs to “re-think its overall direction.
Haqqani said that Pakistan has tried to take advantage of its strategic location. However, it has allowed itself to be used by one major power or another. Pakistan’s dependency on other countries have brought it to the present situation, he said. If we continue to play the same game, the result is not going to be very different in the future, he said.
His remarks come in the backdrop of the US suspending more than USD 1.15 billion security assistance to Pakistan. The US had accused Islamabad of harboring terror groups such as Afghan Taliban and Afghan guerrilla group Haqqani Network.
However, after bashing from the US, Islamabad found support from China, saying the world community should acknowledge country’s “outstanding contribution” to counter terrorism.
Haqqani was removed as Pakistan’s envoy to the US for his alleged role in “Memogate” controversy. A Pakistani memorandum was revolved around seeking help from the Obama administration after the killing of Osama bin Laden to avert a military takeover of the civilian government in his country.
Haqqani further suggested that suspension of the American aid has not brought about a change in Pakistan’s attitude, adding, that political leadership was still hoping that logistical and other considerations would make the Trump administration soften its stance.