Pak Army behind derailing peace process in the region: Nadeem Nusrat

Washington: The Voice of Karachi (VOK) chairman Nadeem Nusrat has termed the recent statement of Pakistani military’s Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (DG-ISPR), Major General Asif Ghafoor, about India as irresponsible, uncalled for and blatant interference in civilians affairs.

In a statement, Nusrat, who also heads South Asia Minorities Alliance Foundation (SAMAF), said that due to its increasingly worsening economy, the last thing Pakistan needs is another military adventurism with its neighbours.

“Unfortunately, the Pakistan Army has a history of derailing peace initiatives between Pakistan and India in the past, and it is apparent from the recent statement of the DG-ISPR that the military leadership is not ready to review its policy of continued hostility with India,” he remarked.

Nusrat added that issuing such statements on issues involving foreign policy is the undisputed domain of the elected civilian government and not just the DG-ISPR.

“Army’s interference in civilian matters has already made Pakistan a butt of jokes in the eyes of the international community and this interference must come to an end, particularly in the wake of the fact that they have already installed its favourite candidate as the prime minister,” he underlined.

The VOK chairman said that as for the talks with India, no peace initiative would be reciprocated by Pakistan’s neighbours or the international community until Islamabad takes credible confidence-building measures (CBMs).

The most important CBM, Nusrat stated, would be to take decisive action against the terror sanctuaries on Pakistani soil that the United States, Afghanistan, and India have all been complaining for years. The other measure would be to stop using terror as a tool of foreign policy.

He said that the Pakistani military establishment must also abandon its policy of glorifying terror leaders and outfits. “Any initiative without taking these steps will never be taken seriously and sincerely by Pakistan’s neighbours, and will only increase Pakistan’s international isolation,” Nusrat added.

The VOK chairman further stated that Pakistan must also answer the international community on the questions relating to gross human rights violations in Karachi, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan.

“Thousands of Mohajirs, Balochs and Pashtuns have become the target of extrajudicial killings at the hands of state security forces in Pakistan and the suppression of ethnic and religious minorities is increasing with every passing day. Pakistan’s demand of the right of self-determination for the people of Kashmir would look genuine and ethical only if Pakistan’s military stops brutal persecution of Mohajirs, Pashtuns, Balochs and other ethnic and religious groups,” Nusrat concluded.