Political Autonomy

The United States’ maintained stance on Pakistan’s coalition gov­ernment formation is a resounding validation of the nation’s sovereignty and internal processes. It’s a stark declaration that Pakistan’s affairs are its own, and no external entity are to dictate mat­ters in our political landscape. In a world where interference in domes­tic affairs is often disguised as international concern, this statement from the US serves as a bold affirmation of the nation’s autonomy.

A spokesperson for the US State Department, Matthew Miller, was asked for his thoughts on Imran Khan’s exclusion from the new coali­tion government. The question, which may have been asked with the expectation that the spokesman would voice some condemnation or intent to interfere, was unexpectedly shut down with Miller declar­ing that such matters are internal and coalitions often take place in such circumstances. These words rightly echo the principle of non-interference in the domestic affairs of other nations. This is not just a matter of diplomatic workings, rather it is a robust defence of our democratic norms. In the circumstances that Pakistan has found it­self in, coalition-building is par for the course at this point. By recog­nising and respecting this reality, the US is actively acknowledging the vitality of diverse political dynamics within other nations, and accepting that this is a situation for us to handle, and us alone.

This does not, however, mean that there is not a tremendous respon­sibility still upon our shoulders. The US’s call for investigating allega­tions of election irregularities is a testament to the fact that even though they value sovereignty, they also believe in upholding democratic prin­ciples. Rigorous scrutiny of electoral processes is the bedrock of de­mocracy, and by urging Pakistan to address these concerns head-on, the US is not meddling—it is holding true to the values it champions.

As we proceed forward, Pakistan must heed these calls not as imposi­tions but as opportunities for growth. Addressing allegations of election irregularities should not be pursued in hopes of appeasing internation­al allies, rather this is a matter of maintaining our political and dem­ocratic stability. Collaboration between political factions, civil society, and international allies is paramount in this endeavour, and swift ac­tions are now needed to make the necessary repairs in our democracy.

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