KARACHI - Chairman Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has expressed concern over the situation being faced by people in Afghanistan and urged all stakeholders to move forward to peace, adding that the PPP will support a pluralistic, egalitarian, inclusive and democratic government in Afghanistan that ensures peace, security, life and liberty for all people. Addressing a press conference at the Chief Minister’s House after the meeting of the PPP Central Executive Committee CEC on the current situation in Afghanistan and the political situation in Pakistan, the PPP chairman said he was worried about Afghan brothers and sisters, who have been facing decades of instability and violence with great courage and fortitude. Bilawal Bhutto said he was concerned for all citizens of Afghanistan, especially women, youth and minority communities. He urged that the citizens of Afghanistan should be allowed to observe the holy month of Muharram freely, and this was a litmus test for Afghanistan.
PPP Chairman said that he had been sounding a warning regarding the situation the Pakistan could face. “Now the government of Pakistan should not fall prey to any expediency on the issue of terrorism, rather it should implement the National Action Plan”, he maintained. He further said that there are various terrorist groups that have targeted Pakistan’s citizens and security forces, and a clear message must be sent to such groups that the Government of Pakistan would not tolerate such activities in the country. He said that the fall of Kabul and Afghanistan had coincided with terrorism incidents in Dasu, Quetta and Karachi. If the government does not continue to implement the National Action Plan, there is a danger that such incidents will increase. “We should all hope for the best, but we should be prepared for any situation,” the PPP chairman said.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari further said that the security of CPEC projects should be reviewed and those working on them should be given full security. He said that it was very important for the government of Pakistan to engage nationalist groups and reach out to them to find a peaceful solution and make them believe in a United Pakistan. “The only way forward is to find a peaceful solution and address the grievances of disillusioned youth across the country who are finding their identities in nationalist causes”, he added. He urged that the government should engage honestly and stick to its promises. Bilawal said that it was an immediate and preliminary response of the PPP to the current situation and over the time its policies would evolve in line with the emerging situation. He demanded of the government to take Parliament into confidence on the situation in Afghanistan and to follow procedure of the Senate resolution in formulating a better foreign policy.
“Everyone is watching the situation in Afghanistan closely and encouraging it to negotiate a representative system that includes all communities.
“We can’t rely on just fencing off the border in Pakistan. If the law and order situation in Afghanistan improves, we will not see the influx of refugees, but if that doesn’t happen, we will see a mass exodus from Afghanistan to Pakistan,” he said.
Bilawal said that there was no doubt that Pakistan’s policy should be clear that the people of Pakistan would not tolerate terrorism under any circumstances. He said, “Prime Minister has taken a stand on every issue and then he has been taking U-turns which create confusion and we cannot afford such incompetence at the moment. We need a clear policy, political consensus, and political will at this time. If there is no explanation from the government, the country will be mired in confusion,” he added.
Replying to a question, Bilawal said that there should be no confusion even for a second on the issue of terrorism, the people of Pakistan have always rejected terrorism.
Replying to yet another question on ties with PML-N and JUI-F, he said the doors of PPP were open for all.
About CM Sindh, he said that he had three names for the post of Sindh CM and they were “Murad Ali Shah, Murad Ali Shah, and Murad Ali Shah”.
Sindh CM Murad Ali Shah, Sherry Rehman, Raza Rabbani, Shazia Marri, Faisal Karim Kundi and Saeed Ghani were also present on the occasion.