LAHORE: Pakistan Prime Minister’s Special Representative on Religious Harmony Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi on Saturday termed yesterday’s meeting of religious scholars with the Army Chief General Syed Asim Munir at GHQ Rawalpindi as fruitful and highly significant.
Speaking at a press conference at Jamia Manzoor-ul-Islamia, Tahir Ashrafi said that discussions in the meeting with the Army Chief encompassed national and international affairs, including topics such as Gaza, Afghanistan, Pakistan’s diplomatic relations, and other crucial matters.
As the Chairman of the Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC), Ashrafi underscored the vital role of peace in a country’s development and commended the collaborative efforts of religious scholars and law enforcement agencies to restore peace in Pakistan. He emphasized the united stance of Ulema o Mashaikh, along with religious scholars nationwide, in supporting Pakistan’s endeavors against extremism and terrorism.
Ashrafi said that Pakistan’s peace is linked with the peace in Afghanistan and urged Kabul to consider Pakistan’s peace as its own. He reiterated the united front of Ulema o Mashaikh under the leadership of COAS General Asim Munir, emphasizing that the use of force and armed action by any non-state entity or group is unacceptable.
Addressing recent terrorist attacks, Ashrafi noted that out of the last 24 suicide bombings in Pakistan, 14 involved Afghan nationals. He said that Afghan nationals were also involved in the recent attack on Mianwali Air Base. Despite this, he expressed Pakistan’s commitment to fostering better and healthy relations with Afghanistan, urging against any attempts to undermine the pursuit of peace between the neighboring countries.
Ashrafi clarified that legally residing Afghan refugees in Pakistan are not being deported. Only those lacking legal documents and residing illegally in Pakistan are being repatriated, and their properties should be valued according to market rates.
Regarding the Gaza situation, Ashrafi condemned Israeli aggression and emphasized that the issue extends beyond Palestine and Arab nations, representing a concern for all of humanity. He questioned the world’s response to the deaths of more than 3,500 innocent children in Gaza due to Israeli brutality, with over 11,000 lives lost in Palestine and Gaza.
Ashrafi reiterated the unequivocal stance of the Pakistani government, emphasizing that Palestinians deserve justice. He commended Pakistan’s unique position as the only Islamic country whose Army Chief has pledged complete support for the Palestinian cause.
— TahirMahmoodAshrafi حافظ محمد طاهراشرفى (@TahirAshrafi) November 18, 2023