Pak ready to de-escalate Russia-Ukraine conflict via mediation - GulfToday

Pak ready to de-escalate Russia-Ukraine conflict via mediation

Imran khan 2

Imran Khan.

Pakistan has expressed its desire to a play a role towards the de-escalation of tensions between Russia and Ukraine via mediation and table talks amid the ongoing Moscow-Kiev war.

Taking to Twitter on Monday, Khan said: "Earlier today I spoke with EU Council President Charles Michel about the Ukraine situation. Shared concern over continued military conflict, highlighted its adverse economic impact on developing countries, stressed urgent need for ceasefire & de-escalation.

"I emphasized the importance of humanitarian relief & reiterated call for a solution through dialogue & diplomacy. We agreed that countries like Pakistan could play a facilitating role in this endeavour. I look forward to close engagement to promote shared objectives."

Khan's offer comes at a time when he lashed out at the European Union (EU) and the western bloc for demanding Islamabad to condemn Russia for invading Ukraine, reminding them of not being thankful to Pakistan for entering a war in Afghanistan and sacrificing thousands of its people and soldiers in the process.

The Prime Minister used strong words and rigid tone while addressing the EU, NATO and the US, stating that joining the western bloc was the worst mistake Pakistan made at the time.

Pakistan abstained from voting against Russia at the UN and maintained that the country would want to be a partner in peace.

The country has also maintained that it will not become party to anyone in the conflict, a stance that has raised eyebrows in the western bloc.

Pakistan has carefully positioned itself on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, despite being under pressure from the West to condemn Russia.

The US has maintained that it is evaluating Pakistan's response to the situation unfolding in Ukraine.

Christopher Wilson, the Assistant US Trade Representative for South and Central Asia, said that Washington and the EU have imposed sanctions on Russia with an aim to cripple its economy.

On the other hand, Pakistan relies heavily on US and Europe for trade and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) through remittances.

The EU remains as the largest trading partner of Pakistan, a critical fact that may get affected if the bloc and US decide to sanction Islamabad over extending its trade relations with Russia amid external efforts by the west to damage Russian economy.

"The US State Department has called for the need to show strong response against Russia, including economically," said Wilson.

Experts do not believe that Pakistan's offer to play role in de-escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine, would help in filtering down the pressure Islamabad is faced with by the west to condemn Moscow.

However, the western bloc's hint towards possible consequences of not joining their position on the conflict, both diplomatically and economically, should be taken as serious concern for Pakistan going forward.

Indo-Asian News Service

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