Pakistan

Internal squabbles within diplomatic Pakistani circuit reaches public domain

August 30, 2017 11:55 AM
former High commissioner of Pakistan Abdul Basit

ISLAMABAD/NEW DELHI: The internal squabbles within the Pakistani diplomatic establishment over India got exposed on Tuesday when an official letter sent by Islamabad's former high commissioner in New Delhi, Abdul Basit, surfaced online, describing Pakistan's ambassador to the US, Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, as "the worst foreign secretary ever".

Basit's letter reveals the deep civilian-military cleavage in Pakistan over its India policy. The other reference in Basit's letter was about Pakistan losing its bid for re-election to the UN Human Rights Council in October 2015. "I strongly feel that it is in Pakistan's interest that you should immediately be removed from Washington DC," Basit wrote to Chaudhry.

Basit wrote that he believes Chaudhry, who as foreign secretary was once Basit's boss, should be sacked from his Washington DC posting.

In his bristling and bilious missive, Basit, known for his proximity to Pakistan's intelligence agency ISI, wrote: "The more I think, the more I am convinced that you have been the worst foreign secretary ever."

He added, "I can cite many examples, the Ufa joint statement and Pakistan's humiliating defeat at the Human Rights Council are sufficient to prove my point. Second, and it is more worrisome, your heart is not in the right place."

In July 2015, foreign secretary S Jaishankar and his then Pakistan counterpart Chaudhry had issued a joint statement in the Russian city of Ufa after a bilateral meeting between PMs Narendra Modi and Nawaz Sharif.

The 2015 statement by foreign secretary S Jaishankar and his then Pakistan counterpart Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry had condemned terrorism in all its forms and both countries agreed to cooperate "to eliminate the menace of terrorism from South Asia".

Basit's letter reveals the deep civilian-military cleavage in Pakistan over its India policy. The other reference in Basit's letter was about Pakistan losing its bid for re-election to the UN Human Rights Council in October 2015. "I strongly feel that it is in Pakistan's interest that you should immediately be removed from Washington DC," Basit wrote to Chaudhry.

"If not so, you should not be given extension beyond your superannuation on February 27, 2018. May Allah help Pakistan when people like you with weak and dubious credentials are at such important positions," Basit concluded.

The copy of the letter was also forwarded to the director of the foreign secretary's office, ministry of foreign affairs.

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