Imran Khan portrays Pakistan as victim of American ingratitude
NEW YORK (AP) – Prime Minister Imran Khan sought to make Pakistan the victim of American ingratitude and international double standards in his address to the United Nations General Assembly on Friday.
In a pre-recorded speech broadcast during the evening, the Pakistani prime minister addressed a range of topics that included climate change, global Islamophobia and “the plunder of the developing world by their corrupt elites” – the latter he said. compared to what the East India Company did to India.
It was for the Indian government that Khan reserved his harshest words, once again calling the Hindu nationalist government of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi “fascist”. But the cricketer-turned-international celebrity-turned-politician was alternately indignant and plaintive as he portrayed the United States as an abandonment of both Pakistan and neighboring Afghanistan.
“For the current situation in Afghanistan, for some reason Pakistan has been blamed for the turn of events, by politicians in the United States and some politicians in Europe,” Khan said. “From this platform, I want everyone to know that the country that suffered the most, besides Afghanistan, was Pakistan when we joined the US war on terror after 9/11. “
He embarked on a narrative that began with the formation of the mujahedin in the United States and Pakistan – considered heroes by then-President Ronald Reagan, he said – during the Soviet occupation. from Afghanistan. But Pakistan had to pick up the pieces – millions of refugees and new militant sectarian groups – when the Soviets and Americans left in 1989.
Khan said the United States sanctioned their former partner a year later, but then recalled after the 9/11 attacks. Khan said Pakistan’s aid to the United States claimed the lives of 80,000 Pakistanis and sparked internal strife and state-directed dissension, while the United States carried out drone attacks.
“So when you hear that at the end. There is a lot of concern in the United States about taking care of the interpreters and anyone who has helped the United States, ”he said, referring to Afghanistan. ” And U.S ? “
Instead of just a “word of appreciation” Pakistan was blamed, Khan said.
Despite Khan’s rhetoric espousing a desire for peace, many Afghans blamed Pakistan for the resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan due to close ties. In August, the United Nations also rejected Pakistan’s request to give its opinion at a special meeting on Afghanistan, demonstrating the shared skepticism of the international community.
In his speech, Khan echoed what his Foreign Secretary Shah Mehmood Qureshi told The Associated Press earlier this week on the sidelines of the UN: the international community should not isolate the Taliban, but rather strengthen the current Afghan government for the sake of the people.
He adopted an optimistic tone about the Taliban regime, saying their leaders are committed to human rights, inclusive government and not allowing terrorists on Afghan soil. But the Taliban’s messages are mixed.
A founder of the Taliban told the PA earlier this week that hard-line supporters would again carry out executions and amputations of hands – albeit this time after trial by judges, including women, and potentially not in public.
“If the world community inspires and encourages them to follow this discourse, it will be a win-win situation for everyone,” he said.
Khan has also turned his anger on this same community for what he perceives to be a free pass granted to India.
“It is unfortunate, very unfortunate, that the world’s approach to human rights violations lacks impartiality, if not selective. Geopolitical considerations, or commercial interests, commercial interests often compel the great powers to ignore the transgressions of their affiliate countries, ”Khan said.
He suffered a litany of actions that “unleashed a reign of fear and violence against India’s 200 million Muslims,” he said, including lynchings, pogroms and discriminatory laws on the citizenship.
As in the past, Khan – who prefers to deliver his speeches in his British-accented English, unlike Modi’s Hindi speeches – has spent a lot of time in Kashmir.
“New Delhi has also embarked on what it worryingly calls the ‘final solution’ to the conflict in Jammu and Kashmir,” Khan said, listing what he called “violations flagrant and systematic human rights “committed by Indian forces. He notably denounced “the forced uprooting of the mortal remains of the great Kashmiri chief”, Syed Ali Geelani, who died earlier this month at the age of 91.
Geelani’s family said authorities took his body and buried it discreetly and without their consent, denying the revered separatist leader in Kashmir a proper Islamic burial. Khan called on the General Assembly to demand the burial and proper rites of Geelani.
Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan and has been claimed by both since they gained independence from the British Empire and began to fight for their rival claims.
He said Pakistan wants peace, but it is India’s responsibility to engage in meaningful ways.
India exercised its right of reply after the last leader intervened on Friday, saying it was up to Pakistan, not India, to show good faith in its commitment. An Indian diplomat said Pakistan must look inside before bringing charges, and stressed that Kashmir is inalienably part of India. Pakistan then exercised its own right of reply, once again denouncing India.
Modi is expected to address the UN General Assembly in person on Saturday, a day after a bilateral meeting with US President Joe Biden.
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