No weapons sold to Ukraine or Russia, reiterates Pakistan

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The allegations surfaced once again, this time in a BBC Urdu report, which claimed Pakistan sold weapons to two US arms firms, which were then sent onwards to Ukraine. The spokeswoman at the Foreign Office was asked during the weekly presser whether the BBC Urdu report indicated it was a fact that Pakistani weapons were being used in the Ukrainian battlefield, regardless of whether they went through the US or not.

“I reaffirm what we have said in the past that Pakistan has not sold weapons to Ukraine or to Russia as we have adopted a policy of strict neutrality in this conflict. Secondly, we are not in a position to confirm what weaponry is being used by the parties in the conflict. Thirdly, as I said in the past, Pakistan’s exports of weaponry to countries are accompanied by end-user certificates and we expect the parties which import Pakistani weapons to respect those end-user commitments,” she responded.

In fact, she pointed out, for exact details about which weaponry was sold where the media should talk to the ISPR or defence officials.

Meanwhile, eyebrows were raised by a recent statement by Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar in which he clearly said that issues with Afghanistan would start to settle down once a ‘legitimate’ government was formed in Kabul. The spokeswoman said: “I am not aware of the statement that you have quoted. What Pakistan has said is that we are engaged with Afghanistan because Afghanistan is our neighbour and it is important for us to maintain dialogue and engagement with our neighbours for the mutual benefit of our peoples. We have also said that our relationship will be strengthened and move forward when we see concrete action against terrorist hideouts and sanctuaries of TTP inside Afghanistan.”

Responding to demands made to Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani by the visiting Afghan commerce minister for Pakistan to release Afghan containers detained in Karachi, the spokeswoman said Pakistan has every right to inspect the goods that arrive at our ports like any other customs authority.

Regarding the transit trade, she said, “Pakistan would continue to facilitate transit trade and bilateral trade with Afghanistan”. However, Pakistan has concerns about the misuse of transit trade facilities and Pakistan has introduced a negative list of products which it believes are luxury items. There is concrete evidence that they are diverted to Pakistan after imported by Afghanistan. So, on such items, Pakistan’s policy is very clear.

Regarding the businesses or assets of individuals who have been here illegally, the spokesperson said any business concerns acquired through fake documents, or those acquired in the name of individuals who are not Afghans, will be treated as per Pakistani law. “We have seen that some business concerns are being run through informal or benami arrangements or through the acquisition of fake Pakistan CNICs. This is another violation of Pakistani law and these issues will be handled as per Pakistan’s laws. There is a task force for the identification of such assets led by the interior secretary. Once we have details about the recommendations of this task force, we will share them with the media.” “Pakistan has concerns that terrorist incidents in recent months have links with terrorist elements which are based in Afghanistan. We have also intelligence that many of these terrorist networks have links with some individuals staying illegally in Pakistan. Our decision to repatriate people, who are in violation of our immigration laws, is a decision irrespective of any nationality,” she said.

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