Pakistan is without doubt a part of the 35 nation alliance against terrorism which is being led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This statement has been made by the Pakistani Foreign Office on Thursday. Qazi Khalilullah, the official spokesman for the Pakistani Foreign Office stated during his weekly briefing to the media in Islamabad that the Pakistani Foreign Office is currently in contact with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to inquire further about what role will Pakistan be playing in this alliance. The spokesman also stated that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are friends with close ties and are currently cooperating in various diverse fields.
Previously on Wednesday, a statement had been issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Pakistan which stated that Pakistan has welcomed this formation of a 35 nation counter terrorism alliance which is being led by Saudi Arabia. Pakistani authorities also stated that they are currently awaiting any further detail as to the extent of their participation in this alliance, or their role or participation in the various activities which this alliance will be involved in. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has just announced on Tuesday that they had created this alliance of 35 nations comprising of only Muslim Nations, in order to combat terrorism and extremism; this alliance also included Pakistan.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Adel Al Jubeir has later come out to clarify that all of the countries participating in this alliance will have the complete freedom to decide for themselves as to the extent of their participation or role in the alliance. The Military of Pakistan had begun a new phase in their bilateral defense relationship by starting their training of the Saudi Special Forces personnel in combating and defeating terrorism back in October. Probably the most beloved personality in Pakistan, their Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif had also visited the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia after commencing the special exercises in order to discuss the efforts being made to counter and defeat terrorism.
One of the biggest daily national newspapers had stated in their editorial comments on Thursday that Pakistan would be best advised to proceed carefully on the issue of the Saudi led Alliance. Other than the number of total member states and the huge geographical covering of this alliance, this alliance has seeked to bring together countries such as Malaysia, Turkey and Nigeria. The statement was made in the editorial section of the Dawn newspaper, perhaps one of the oldest and largest media house in Pakistan.
Some of the key states of the Middle East such as Iran, Syria and Iraq have not been included in this great Muslim alliance. For Pakistan this alliance has posed many questions. Since Riyadh has been stated to be the joint operations center by the Saudi Minister of Defense, it is not completely certain whether the members of the alliance will be required to partake in military actions on Iraqi, Iranian or Syrian soil.
Source: Gulf News
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