close
Sunday June 16, 2024

No new military courts through constitutional amendment: Bilawal

The FM says PPP opposed ban on PTI but now it has crossed all red lines

By Asim Yasin & Saleh Zaafir
May 26, 2023
Pakistan´s Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari speaks during an interview with AFP in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-administered Kashmir on May 22, 2023.—AFP
Pakistan´s Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari speaks during an interview with AFP in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-administered Kashmir on May 22, 2023.—AFP 

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Thursday said that he was against banning political parties but political parties also had to remain political, adding that if any political party wants to become a militant organisation, action will be taken according to law.

Talking to the media at the Parliament House, Bilawal said: “We opposed the ban on PTI in the cabinet but now they have crossed all redlines, there is nothing we can do and action should be taken as per the existing laws.”

He said apart from the corps commander’s house, military installations were also attacked and these attacks on Pakistani military installations were made in a systematic and coordinated manner. “Every Pakistani wants that the law take its course on the May 9 incident,” he said.

In reply to a question regarding the military courts, Bilawal said: “The federal government is not establishing new military courts through a constitutional amendment nor planning to bring it.”

He added that Official Secret Act and Army Act are already existing and action will be taken against the lawbreakers in accordance with the same law.

He said when Imran Khan was the prime minister, the Army Act was there but he did not amend it.

The PPP chairman, in response to a question, said that Imran himself sabotaged the talks and the PPP was the first to talk about the dialogue before May 9, adding that the talks between the government and PTI were successful. “The government and PTI representatives had agreed to hold elections in the country on one day but Imran Khan sabotaged it,” he said, adding that as long as Imran’s behavior is undemocratic, there will be a threat to the democratic forces.

He said that in 2014, Imran attacked the PTV and “we, the democratic people remained silent. In response to the no-confidence vote, Imran declared us traitors but no action was taken on PTI chief’s unconstitutional dissolution of the assembly and on petrol bombs thrown from his house.” Imran Khan should realise that he had also been the prime minister of the country, he said.

When a journalist asked Bilawal whether he believes that PTI is a political party, the foreign minister responded he believes that the PTI has the ability and potential to become a political party but everyone saw what happened on May 9 as the Jinnah House and other installations were damaged. “When the details of the arson attack on May 9 came out, everyone was saddened.”

He said political parties always solve their problems in parliament and political parties do not do politics of sticks and stones. He said the purpose of the Charter of Democracy was to keep democracy running in the country.