Pakistan has expressed concern over the growing tensions in the Gulf region between the United States and Iran. Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson Muhammad Faisal said regional tension and war are not in anyone’s interest and tensions between the US and Iran is concerning as ‘a minor mistake can become a cause of a bigger loss’.
Islamabad’s ties with the Gulf Arabs, particularly the Saudis, has placed Pakistan in a ‘very sensitive position’. Pakistan shares a cordial, strategic, cultural, defence and religious relationship with the region.
Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Pakistan was closely following the situation and would take a stand that best served the national interest. Qureshi said they are rightly concerned about the security and stability of the region at large.
“We need to evolve a clear strategy on this. Pakistan has good relations with all countries in the Middle East. We don’t want our relations to get damaged.”
Qureshi further said that Pakistan would develop a strategy with its national interests in mind. He added that the government will consult the advisory council on foreign affairs that included several veteran diplomats.
The US military buildup in the Gulf, harsh rhetoric from President Donald Trump, as well as accusations from the US that Iran was responsible for ‘sabotaging’ several oil tankers off the UAE port of Fujairah recently, without any solid evidence, serves to prove that Washington may indeed be building a case for war against Iran.
Rumours were further fueled when the US announced that it was pulling ‘non-emergency’ employees from Iraq. Experts say the United States must shed its ‘combative rhetoric’ and end its economic blockade and engage Iran with respect if it genuinely seeks a modus vivendi.