ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan Thursday categorically called for differentiating between freedom movement and terrorism, urging SAARC member countries to respect the people’s rights enshrined in the United Nations Security Council resolutions.
“We believe, it is important to maintain differentiation between terrorism and freedom movement particularly those which have been sanctified by the UN Security Council,” he said while addressing the conference of Interior Ministers from South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) countries.
“We have seen that brutal force has been used against unarmed civilians and it is important to respect the fundamental rights of the people and not suppress freedom struggle in the name of fight against terrorism,” Chaudhry Nisar said in special reference to Indian atrocities against unarmed Kashmiris.
Nisar said terrorism was a global problem and this region had been afflicted by this menace. But, in this scenario, instead of blaming each other there is a need to hold dialogue and resolve the issues, he added.
“I need not to mention that Pakistan itself has been one of the biggest sufferers of terrorism and very firmly and strongly believes that instead of engaging in blame game and taking swipe at each other, we should take out time to sit down together and try to work out the problem – to work out any reservation which we might have towards each other,” the minister said.
“It is needless to say Pakistan is ready to engage in any dialogue with any country. Pakistan has never closed the doors for dialogue with any country. It is for those who have actually closed the doors and have put conditions and sub-conditions.”
Nisar said, terrorist activities are not restricted to India, Afghanistan or Bangladesh and such incidents there are highly condemnable. “But, it does not mean that hundreds of terrorism incidents taking place in Pakistan are less condemnable.”
He urged to sit together and resolve differences as he cited that it was not fair to swipe at each other by using terms like Good Taliban and Bad Taliban. “I think we have come a long way since then and the answer is that we should sit down and resolve our disputes.”
But, beyond that we must also need to look at the genesis of terrorism and resolution of unresolved disputes is the only way ahead to address these deep fissures that have evolved over decades, he added.
The interior minister also urged attempts to counter perpetrators religiously motivated that are also an issue of serious concern for us. Such people should be immediately tried and convicted to prevent occurrence of such incidents in the future.
“How these matters will be resolved – only through negotiation and discussion,” he said.
Nisar called for rising above national agendas to resolve the bilateral and regional issues. “We shall have to rise above our national agenda – we have to rise above, may be even on years old held positions, because if we stick to our positions, if we are rigid and the essence of our policy is point scoring, or taking swipes at each other – we will never get to anywhere.” – APP