Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday offered rare praise for India’s foreign policy and said that India’s independent foreign policy allows it to serve Indian national interest.
He said, “I applaud our neighbouring country India. They have always had an independent foreign policy. India is in an alliance with the United States in Quad and yet it’s buying Russian oil despite sanctions. This is because Indian foreign policy is in the interest of Indian people.”
I salute India for pursuing an independent foreign policy always, today India is an ally of USA and Russia at the same time: PM Imran Khan pic.twitter.com/hJZcfMQRan— Murtaza Ali Shah (@MurtazaViews) March 20, 2022
Khan’s comment has come in the midst of the toughest phase of his political career as he is facing a no-confidence motion in the parliament from the Opposition and a mutiny of sorts within his own Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party. Nearly two dozen PTI MPs have come in open rebellion against Khan.
Moreover, the all-powerful Pakistani military has decided to stay neutral in this episode, which is being seen as their withdrawal of support for Khan, who is widely believed to have been propped as the country’s prime minister by them to oust Nawaz Sharif.
Lately, Khan has blamed foreign powers for trying to dislodge him from power. He has also been critical of pressure from Western countries to criticise the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Imran Khan attacks European Union again in his public address accusing its ambassadors of breaching diplomatic protocol and saying that they are afraid to tell India what they asked Pakistan ie, condemn Russian invasion of Ukraine.— Syed Talat Hussain (@TalatHussain12) March 20, 2022
Earlier this month, ambassadors of 22 countries and the head of the European Union delegation in Islamabad signed a letter saying, “As Head of Mission to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, we urge Pakistan to join us in condemning Russia’s actions and to voice support for upholding the UN Charter and the founding principles of international law.”
Khan had slammed the letter and had asked whether India had received similar criticism from these countries. He had said, “EU ambassadors wrote a letter to Pakistan, asking us to issue an anti-Russia statement. I ask EU ambassadors ‘did you write that letter to India as well?’”
The latest comments of Khan on India’s foreign policy should be seen in this wider context in which Khan has been accusing everyone ranging from the Opposition to colluding foreign powers of trying to topple his government.