PM Imran Khan once again rules out normalization of relations with Israel

Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan speaks during a press conference in Kabul on November 19, 2020. (AFP/File)
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Updated 28 November 2020

PM Imran Khan once again rules out normalization of relations with Israel

  • Imran Khan tells his party members his administration will follow the policy course set by the country’s founding father
  • The PM says his government will not soften its attitude toward the Jewish state until a just settlement of the Palestine dispute

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday reiterated his stance on the Palestine dispute while meeting the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) spokespersons, saying his administration would not recognize Israel until there was a just settlement of the Palestinian issue.
According to the local media, Khan reminded the participants of the meeting that his government would follow the same policy that was established by the country’s founding father, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, soon after its independence.
He noted that there was no possibility of recognizing Israel until the people of Palestine were given their rights and allowed to decide their own political future.
The Pakistani prime minister recently told a local news channel that his government was under increasing pressure to extend diplomatic recognition to the Jewish state. However, he refused to name the international actors pleading Israel’s case.
Previously, the military administration of General (r) Pervez Musharraf indicated that it was willing to normalize relations with Israel, and his foreign minister, Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri, held backchannel meetings with Israeli officials in Turkey.
More recently, there was some speculation that Pakistan was thinking of softening its stance on the Palestine dispute.
However, the country’s foreign ministry and other senior officials consistently denied such a possibility, saying they would only think about it once Palestinians got their right to self-determination.
“For a just, comprehensive and lasting peace, Pakistan has consistently supported a two-state solution in accordance with the relevant United Nations and Organization of Islamic Cooperation resolutions as well as international law,” the foreign office spokesperson, Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri, told Arab News in September. “Pakistan wants pre-1967 borders and Al-Quds Al-Sharif as the capital of Palestine.”

Pakistan’s national flag carrier to bring back impounded plane by approaching Malaysian court

Updated 15 January 2021

Pakistan’s national flag carrier to bring back impounded plane by approaching Malaysian court

  • A Pakistan International Airlines plane was ‘held back’ by Malaysian authorities after a local court issued a verdict against the airlines in a payment dispute
  • The national flag career called the situation ‘unacceptable,’ announced to send its legal team to the court to present its case

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan International Airlines announced on Friday its legal team would approach a court in Malaysia that ordered to impound one of its planes that was scheduled to fly out of Kuala Lumpur earlier in the day and bring back passengers to Pakistan. 

“PIA was facing a payment dispute with another company and the matter was being heard by a court in the United Kingdom for the last six months,” said the airlines spokesman, Abdullah Khan, in a video message. “The same company also took a stay order against us in another country [Malaysia] and a local court issued an ex-party decision against the airlines without serving it a notice or hearing its stance.” 

Khan added that the PIA legal team would pursue the matter with Pakistan's official and diplomatic assistance. 

“It is important to mention here that this incident was timed to somewhat mitigate our response since it happened ahead of the weekend,” he maintained. “However, our legal team will take up the matter in the Malaysian court immediately after the weekend and we are hopeful to resolve this issue as soon as possible.” 

Pakistan’s foreign office also issued a statement on Friday, saying its diplomatic mission in Malaysia was in close contact with relevant authorities over the detained plane and its stranded passengers. 

“The passengers are being properly looked after and alternate arrangements for their travel have also been finalized,” the foreign office spokesperson, Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri, said while responding to a media query. 

“They will be departing Kuala Lumpur by EK 343 later tonight,” he added. 

The PIA plane was held back by Malaysian authorities over a British court case, PIA said in an earlier statement, adding it would pursue the matter through diplomatic channels. 

“A PIA aircraft has been held back by a local court in Malaysia taking a one-sided decision pertaining to a legal dispute between PIA and another party pending in a UK court,” a PIA spokesman said in a statement. 

The national carrier’s statement said the situation was “unacceptable” and that it had asked for support from Pakistan’s government to raise the matter diplomatically. Malaysian authorities did not immediately respond to request for comment.