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May 24, 2016

PA passes resolution against US drone strike


May 24, 2016


Punjab Assembly on Monday unanimously passed a resolution moved by PTI MPA and the Leader of the Opposition Mian Mehmood-ur-Rasheed condemning the US drone strike on Pakistani territory on Saturday and terming it a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty and a breach of the United Nations Charter that guarantees the inviolability of the territorial integrity of its member states.

The resolution expressed Pakistan’s resolve in the war against terrorism but stated that such infringements of the country’s territorial sovereignty would not be tolerated and urged the federal government to summon the American ambassador and demand an explanation of the unfortunate incident. It is pertinent to note here that Pakistan accused the United States on Sunday of violating its sovereignty with a drone strike against the leader of the Afghan Taliban, is perhaps the most high-profile US incursion into Pakistani territory since the 2011 raid to kill Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad.

Punjab Assembly reconvened on Monday with less than 40 MPAs present in the House and no cabinet members in attendance. Dismal attendance of members and assembly matter ruled pending due to absent parliamentary secretaries continued for the third week in the Assembly. A startling number of questions for the departments of Revenue and Colonies were ruled pending as the answers were not available. 

Addressing the House, independent MPA Ehsan Riaz Fatyana lamented to the PA Speaker that four of his questions on the state of illegal occupations of government owned land had not been furnished with answers despite this pressing matter at hand. The PA Speaker under pressure from members of both benches had to refer most matters to the parliamentary standing committees as the answers given by Parliamentary Secretary for Revenue Chaudhry Zahid Akram were mostly unsatisfactory. Call attention notices were also ruled pending along with a significant number of adjournment motions. The House took a break for 30 minutes on Monday to regain strength in numbers. 

The House also engaged in a brief general discussion on wheat procurement that began with a policy statement by Provincial Food Minister Bilal Yasin. 

The session will resume today (Tuesday).

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