Qureshi, Turkish FM discuss ways to mobilise global community to stop Israeli aggression

Published May 18, 2021
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said on Tuesday that Pakistan was establishing contacts with different countries to stop Israeli attacks on Gaza. — APP/File
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said on Tuesday that Pakistan was establishing contacts with different countries to stop Israeli attacks on Gaza. — APP/File

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said on Tuesday that Pakistan was establishing contacts with different countries in a bid to pressure Israel to stop attacks on Gaza which have been continuing since May 10.

The foreign minister is currently on a diplomatic mission to Turkey to bring the international community's attention to the worsening situation in Palestine.

After meeting his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara, Qureshi said: "Nothing can shake our resolve as we stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Palestine in their legitimate right to self-determination & establishment of independent state with pre-1967 borders & Al Quds Al Shareef as capital."

During the meeting, the two foreign ministers discussed ways to mobilise the international community to help stop Israeli aggression against the Palestinians, a Foreign Office statement said.

"It was reaffirmed that the international community had a collective responsibility in ensuring necessary steps to help address the dire situation, restore peace, and facilitate a just solution," it added.

Qureshi apprised the Turkish foreign minister of the sentiment prevailing in Pakistan in support of the Palestinian people including the resolution unanimously adopted by the National Assembly.

While taking stock of the bilateral relations between the two countries, the two sides discussed the ongoing preparations for the 7th Session of the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council (HLSCC) that will be held in Turkey this year.

Earlier, Foreign Minister Qureshi had addressed a meeting of the OIC Executive Committee convened by his Saudi counterpart on Sunday to discuss the situation in Palestine.

As part of Pakistan’s diplomatic endeavours, Prime Minister Imran Khan and Qureshi have reached out to a number of countries including Palestine, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Indonesia and others, according to the FO.

In a statement issued earlier today, Qureshi said it would be "lamentable if the international community remained silent on the Palestinian situation". He also called upon the Muslim community in European countries to play its role in helping stop "Israel's persecution of [Palestinians] in Gaza", according to a report by Radio Pakistan.

"The bombardment in Palestine has resulted in power outage and affected the supplies of essential commodities," the foreign minister noted.

He said Israel was "complicating" the matter further and its bombardment of the enclave was preventing the Palestinians from accessing healthcare.

Pakistan and Turkey's strategy is "clear", the foreign minister said, adding that the two countries wanted to convince the global community that Israeli air strikes should be "stopped immediately".

Read: No respite for Palestinians from Israel strikes, as diplomatic efforts intensify

Qureshi said "hurdles were being created" so the Palestinian foreign minister would not be able to attend the UN General Assembly's session on the situation in Palestine. "We will wait for the Palestinian foreign minister and want him to accompany us to the session," the report quoted him as saying.

The Indonesian foreign minister had also assured he would participate in the UNGA meeting, he shared.

A day earlier, Qureshi left for his visit to Turkey on the special instructions of Prime Minister Imran, a Foreign Office statement said.

At the end of his visit, Qureshi will leave for New York with the foreign ministers of Palestine, Turkey and Sudan.

During his New York visit, the foreign minister will hold "important meetings" with different dignitaries and will "raise a voice [for] oppressed Palestinians in the UNGA", the statement said.

He will also talk to local and international media representatives and convey Pakistan's stance on the Palestinian situation to them, the statement added.

Also on Monday, Qureshi used the National Assembly platform to give a call for countrywide peaceful protests on May 21 (Friday) against the ongoing Israeli aggression in Palestine.

The foreign minister said Pakistan and Turkey had decided to move the United Nations against the Zionist atrocities on the Palestinian people.

He said a demand would be made to convene an emergency session of the UN General Assembly where he and his Turkish counterpart would raise their voices for Palestine.

He said Pakistan had a clear position that Israel, which was hell-bent upon oppressing people in Gaza, should not be compared with the Palestinians who were facing barbarism.

A resolution moved by the foreign minister strongly denounced the systematic and brutal disenfranchisement, exclusion and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people.

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