Nu­clear pro­gramme — non-ne­go­tiable

Pakistan Observer - - EDITORIALS & COMMENTS -

DE­SPITE na­tional con­sen­sus on the na­ture and ra­tio­nale of the coun­try’s nu­clear pro­gramme, the United States is per­sist­ing with its strat­egy, orig­i­nally con­ceived when Pak­istan started its journey on nu­clear path, aimed at first cap­ping and then rolling back the pro­gramme. There have been pe­ri­ods when Wash­ing­ton did not press Pak­istan openly on the is­sue as it needed Pak­istan’s co­op­er­a­tion in re­al­iza­tion of its re­gional ob­jec­tives and agenda but the game plan re­mains un­changed.

This has been con­firmed twice by Ad­vi­sor on For­eign Af­fairs Sartaj Aziz — first in his state­ment on the floor of the Sen­ate and again in an in­ter­view with state-run PTV in which he cat­e­gor­i­cally stated that the Govern­ment re­sisted US at­tempts to cap Pak­istan’s nu­clear pro­gramme. His un­am­bigu­ous re­marks that the Govern­ment re­fused to make any com­pro­mise on this vi­tal na­tional is­sue would surely be a morale booster for peo­ple of Pak­istan, who con­sider nu­clear pro­gramme as an ef­fec­tive de­ter­rence in the face of ag­gres­sive and expansionist designs of In­dia. We have been re­peat­ing in these col­umns that the suc­ces­sive gov­ern­ments in Pak­istan in­vested nec­es­sary re­sources and re­sisted pres­sures and con­tin­ued to up­grade our nu­clear ca­pa­bil­ity and there should be no com­pro­mise on this ac­count. We are glad that PML(N) Govern­ment, which re­jected both temp­ta­tions and for­eign pres­sure and det­o­nated nu­clear de­vice, has adopted a firm stand on the is­sue of cap­ping of the nu­clear pro­gramme. How Pak­istan can af­ford to cap its pro­gramme when the US-led West is show­er­ing all con­ces­sions on In­dia and pro­vid­ing ev­ery type of con­ceiv­able as­sis­tance to sharpen its nu­clear teeth. Wash­ing­ton is also go­ing out of the way to seek mem­ber­ship of Nu­clear Sup­pli­ers’ Group (NSG) for In­dia and is open­ing op­posed to Pak­istan’s en­try into the Group, which is clear man­i­fes­ta­tion of dou­ble stan­dards on the nu­clear is­sue. The US is speak­ing In­dia’s lan­guage by op­pos­ing minia­tur­iza­tion of nu­clear weapons by Pak­istan, a de­vel­op­ment which should oth­er­wise have been wel­comed as it is mo­ti­vated by Islamabad’s de­sire to mit­i­gate and con­tain lethal­ity of nu­clear weapons. The US must dis­card its fu­tile pol­icy of pres­sur­iz­ing Pak­istan on the nu­clear is­sue as no Govern­ment can af­ford to ig­nore na­tional con­sen­sus on the pro­gramme on na­tional de­fence and se­cu­rity.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.