Mian sahib’s UN trip: Only food friends and pleasure
Since Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has left New York after attending the 70th UNGA session, it’s now time to asses what Pakistan achieved diplomatically in the last 7 days. Whether this trip contributed to attract the required attention to stop the killings of innocent civilians by Indian shelling across the LoC ? Were we able to communicate effectively and let the world know about brutalities occurring in Indian held Kashmir? And finally, did our worthy Prime Minister have any time to meet global corporate leaders to explore possibility of investment in the country?
Prime Minister, whilst speaking to media personnel before departing, said that he was happy that Kashmir issue was raised forcefully and he told Ban Ki-Moon,without mincing any words, it’s now time to solve it. His meeting with world leaders was very successful on other issues as well.
But what we saw was entirely different.The Prime Minister remained in isolation throughout the trip. He didn’t attend the receptions hosted by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and President Obama. He did not go to Ban Ki-Moon’s event because he was being asked to sit in the second row, whereas Modi was given a seat on the front table besides Ban Ki-Moon and President Obama. He didn’t attend the summit hosted by President Obama on the subject of terrorism as well. Mr Fatimi represented Pakistan there.
Prime Minister admitted indirectly that he was expecting a meeting with Indians in New York. However Pakistani diplomats, even in private conversations, kept on saying that Pakistan is not seeking any meeting. But Prime Minister, when asked why didn’t the dosier of RAW involvement in Pakistan was given to India, said,” We thought that we will give the dosier in meeting but the meeting never happened and now we will give it in few days”.We don’t know what was he talking about. Whether about his meeting with Modi or Sartaj Aziz’s meeting with his counterpart. It simply tells us that the status co prevails and diplomacy is not working. United States and office of the Secretary General made it clear that they could not play any role unless Indians also agree to that which is their public stand for the last many decades so no change.
Before the arrival of Prime Minister in New York, our diplomats leaked to the media that Indians are planning to build a wall on the working boundary ,which was a violation of ceasefire agreements and Pakistan has informed the Security Council about it through a letter. A media hype was created on this issue but very surprisingly Prime Minister, when he met with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon did not even mention about this wall.When asked about it, Foreign secretary Aizaz Chaudhry said that violations on LoC were important than the wall issue. Even more surprising was the PM’s attitude, when he was asked about the controversial wall on LoC his response was, ” Which wall, I don’t know about any wall” but then our PR in United Nations came to the rescue, by saying that the Prime Minister’s talk is about the wall on the working boundary, not on the LoC. There was much talk of raising the Kashmir issue with full force but Pakistani diplomats were not even aware of the name of Kashmiri leaders who had come from Indian held Kashmir to attend the OIC contact group meeting on Kashmir. In the press briefing when asked who was here from Indian held Kashmir , no one including Foreign Secretary and PR had any clue about the name.
We did not see any effort on the part of the Prime Minister to mobilize well-placed Pakistanis to do any diplomacy for their ancestral home. Only Mr Saeed Shaikh who happens to be a close family friend of Mian sahib was given VIP status. He is not part of the Government but was made to sit with the Prime Minister in UNGA session as well. We saw him sitting with Mian sahib when US Secretary of State Mr John Kerry came. In the name of community meetings, he sat only with his loyalists. No real gathering with the community was arranged.
Mian sahib once again demonstrated that he doesn’t like criticism. He lashed out at the media which criticized him, saying that Pakistani press is a divided one and is “irresponsible media ” which always finds evils in his government and the other is sensible media, which writes objectively.
However special arrangements were made for Mian sahib’s food. Four cooks were flown from Pakistan and they did cooking for Mian sahib and his guests. But story about Mian sahib food is always a sensitive matter and instructions were that it shall not be leaked to the press, that’s why cooking was done at the residence of the PR.