PM Shahbaz says he had fruitful meetings with the world leaders, who pledged aid for Pakistan's flood-hit population
ISLAMABAD: Following his return after attending the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly and Annual Meeting of the Council of Heads of State (CHS) of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif Tuesday said that he fought Pakistan's case with all his might and highlighted the plight of millions of flood victims before the world nations.
Addressing a press conference Wednesday, PM Shahbaz said that he held positive meetings with world leaders, including China’s President Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin during the visits.
The premier went on to say that he presented Pakistan’s strong position on Kashmir, Palestine, and Islamophobia, adding that the treatment of Muslims in India was also strongly condemned.
"I don't think we have done anything to deserve the disaster of flooding that has displaced millions," the PM said, talking to the media about the climate crisis.
The PM said he had fruitful meetings with the world leaders, who pledged aid for Pakistan's flood-hit population.
Talking about the UN’s support of Pakistan’s climate change crisis, the premier said that UN Secretary-General António Guterres has spoken for the people of Pakistan.
“We are preparing for the donor conference and will not delay it,” he said.
He said unlike the last government, the PML-N regime was going the extra mile to reconnect with the world, especially, friendly countries.
"PTI government isolated Pakistan by estranging a number of close allies," the PM said adding," Now we are coming out of that diplomatic backwater."
“I cannot repeat what the leaders of Pakistan’s friendly nations told me about the previous government, as they are state secrets. You’ll sweat if I reveal what they said,” PM Shahbaz remarked, adding that foreign leaders complained about the last government communicating with them in a disrespectful manner.
He added that this behaviour of the PTI government damaged Pakistan’s reputation, while also destroying the economy.
The prime minister maintained that the 'audio leaks' scandal was a critical matter and he was in the process of forming a high-powered committee to probe into it.
Replying to a question, the PM dismissed allegations that Maryam Nawaz ever sought favour from him for the import of machinery for her son-in-law.
The prime minister maintained that the 'audio leaks' scandal was a critical matter and he was in the process of forming a high-level committee to probe into it.
“After the audio leak, who will come to visit Pakistan’s prime minister? This is a matter of dignity for the nation of 220 million people,” he said, adding that his Principle Secretary Dr Tauqir Shah has told him that the matter of machinery import will be sent to the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC).
‘Did they ask us when extending army chief’s tenure?’ PM Shahbaz said, taking about PTI's decision to reappoint the army chief in 2019.
The premier further questioned that when they [PTI] extended the army chief’s tenure “did they consult us?” PM Shehbaz went on to say that whatever decision will be taken will be according to the law and constitution.
Taking a jibe at PTI’s stance of “imported government”, he said: “If our government is imported then why would Russia’s president meet me nicely?”
He maintained that if Russia is ready to provide us with cheap wheat, then we are ready to take it.
Commenting on the expenses incurred during his recent foreign visits, PM Shahbaz said: “From being the chief minister to becoming the prime minister, I’ve paid all expenses from my own pocket."
During the conference, a journalist told PM Shahbaz that Imran Khan would run clips of the prime minister in his political rallies showing him begging for money from the world.
Responding to the journalist’s comment, the premier said: “Was Imran Khan going abroad to give money? If I’m going to beg, then was Imran Khan carrying coffers [filled with] money?”
The prime minister added that Khan, who accuses him, should look in the mirror.
He said, “Was Imran Khan going abroad for four years to give them coffers?”
The premier further questioned if Khan was giving out Pakistan’s money to charity for the last four years.
“Imran Khan, you should fear God. You have destroyed Pakistan?” PM Shahbaz said.