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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Bilawal cries foul: Asad Umar denies ties with banned outfits

News Desk |

Earlier today, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, once again, blamed ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf government and its ministers for “promising immunity” to banned extremist organizations and using their support to win 2018 general election. In a series of tweets, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari reprimanded the government for not being committed in their resolve to crack down on extremism.

Bilawal tweeted, “As long as compromised individuals remain in the cabinet no one will take GOP claims seriously. Those who have supported such groups & their training camps must be removed from the federal cabinet. Finally, ministers who promised immunity to such groups under PTI must go if GOP expects opposition to believe they are serious about taking on extremism, banned organizations & distancing themselves from past support to such groups.”

He then shared an old article on Asad Umar’s meeting with leader of Ansarul Ummah, Maulana Fazlur Rehman Khalil, who is also one of the founders of Harkatul Mujahideen al Islami (HuM), which has been banned with terror accusations by international bodies. Bilawal tweeted, in reference to Finance Minister Asad Umar, “Ministers who have been part of mainstreaming & got support of such outfits during the elections must be removed from the federal cabinet.”

Finance Minister denounced all accusations of supporting extremist outfits and clarified that he had met some religious leaders during his election campaign.

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari went onto accuse the PTI-led government of not being responsive to his demands and reinstated his resolve to form a joint National Security Council (NSC) parliamentary committee. He tweeted, “The government has responded to my demand to sack ministers associated with banned outfits by declaring me anti-state, issuing death threats & NAB notices.” “None of this deters us from our principle stand; form joint NSC parliamentary committee & act against banned outfits.”

Asad Umar Denies ties with Extremist Organizations

Finance Minister denounced all accusations of supporting extremist outfits and clarified that he had met some religious leaders during his election campaign. After addressing a seminar in Islamabad earlier today, Asad Umar was asked for a response to the PPP’s allegations of harboring ties with banned radical outfits. The Finance Minister laughed it off and asked the journalist his opinion, “Do you think I have any ties with such outfits?”

He then explained, “I had some meetings with the leaders of some organizations during my election campaign, they announced their support for me and these are those organizations that have been victim of violence and terror”. Asad Umar went onto say that he is still in touch with these leaders and had recently received a message reaffirming their support. He said, “They [religious leaders] messaged me and said that they are still standing with me even today, and given the decision to ban such outfits, they are even willing to release a statement for me”.

Read more: Naya Pakistan: Government to curb banned outfits within four months

ARY News reports that the Finance Minister expressed disappointment over the unproductive and meaningless tactics of the opposition, and asserted that the opposition parties always resort to maligning state institutions when they are deprived of power. He stressed that now the Pakistani government and Army are on one page and unified in their resolve to fight terrorism.

Mina Jahangir with additional input by News Desk.