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Shireen Mazari raises conspiracy linkage issues over FM Bhutto’s comments

The former Human Rights Minister highlighted one giveaway in the FM Bhutto's response where he said: "it was part of his (IK's) foreign policy." She noted that "almost identical words used in cipher! Raises some conspiracy linkage issues!"

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On Thursday, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, speaking at a press briefing at the United Nations headquarters, meekly defended former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to Russia at the time when the war in Ukraine seemed imminent. The Foreign Minister said that the former prime minister “conducted that trip as a part of his foreign policy.” He added that he would “absolutely defend” the former Prime Minister as there was no way he could have known that Russia would invade its neighbor on the same day he landed in the country.

Foreign Minister made these remarks when he was responding to a question by a journalist regarding Imran Khan’s visit to Moscow and how the new coalition government was going to make amends for the “mistakes” of the previous government.

FM Bhutto termed the previous government’s decision to visit Russia as innocent and maintained that Pakistan was being unfairly treated for it.

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He further added that Pakistan was “absolutely clear” of the fact that it has to advocate and uphold the principles set forth by the United Nations, including that of non-use of force. He maintained that Pakistan was not part of any conflict, nor did it wish to become part of one; instead, “We would continue to emphasise on the importance of dialogue and diplomacy to resolve this conflict as soon as possible. And we will certainly not take any side or take the side of any aggressor within this context,” he said.

Separately, when a journalist drew the Foreign Ministers’ attention to the rising terrorism in the region, he responded, “As far as terrorism and extremism is concerned, this is a consistent and long term existential threat to all of us, there are obviously immediate concerns which need to be addressed vis-a-vis specific terrorist threats groups […] as far as our country’s long term approach is concerned that needs a lot of political ownership and consensus and investment across the board where we not only fight the militant component […] also the ideological component.”

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The Foreign Minister’s remarks garnered a lot of attention, especially from the members of the former ruling party. Reacting to the FM minister’s comments on Imran Khan’s visit to Russia, the former Human Rights Minister highlighted one giveaway in the FM Bhutto’s response where he said: “it was part of his (IK’s) foreign policy.” She noted that “almost identical words used in cipher! Raises some conspiracy linkage issues!”