Pakistan commits to fighting terrorism, seeks 'balanced ties' with world
Pakistan has pledged to eliminate the threat of terrorism and bring complete peace to the country, according to a recent statement released by its Foreign Office (FO). At a press conference, FO spokesperson Asif Iftikhar dubbed terrorism a "common threat" to the entire region. According to the spokesperson, Pakistan's foreign policy is consistent and seeks "balanced" relationships with all the major world powers.
- Pakistan has often been criticized for promoting terrorism and sheltering terrorists within its borders.
- India and the United States urged Islamabad last month to take "immediate, sustained, and irreversible action" to guarantee that no region under its authority is used for terrorist attacks.
- The statement seeking "balanced" ties with the world can be seen undoing the anti-US campaign of former Prime Minister Imran Khan.
"We shall pursue all avenues for defeating the scourge of terrorism and ensuring the attainment of peace and stability in the region and in our country," Iftikhar said, emphasizing Pakistan's unwavering commitment to the cause. "We want balanced, objective, and broad-based relations based on mutual interest, mutual benefit, and mutual respect with all major powers, including the US, China, Russia, and others," he added.
Pakistan has also been on the Financial Action Task Force's (FATF) gray list since June 2018 for its failure to take action against money laundering, which facilitates terror financing. It was given the deadline of October 2019 by FATF to meet the norms.
In response to a question about Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari's recent visit to the United States, the FO spokesperson said it was clear that both sides shared a desire to move their relationship forward in the best interests of the two countries. According to Iftikhar, both the US and Pakistan want to deepen engagement and strengthen relations in a variety of areas.
Currently, India-Pakistan relationships are stable, with both sides adhering to the ceasefire agreed upon in February 2021. Experts believe this is helping in building confidence at both the higher political-military level as well as the ground level. Moreover, India's humanitarian help to Afghanistan—transportation of wheat via Pakistan—has shown that there is scope for cooperation for "limited purposes," sources recently told The Indian Express.