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EditorialPM’s sane diplomacy in Moscow

PM’s sane diplomacy in Moscow

Although the Pakistani prime minister’s visit to Russia was a historic one, it came at an extremely sensitive time. During Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to Moscow, the Russian president launched a full-fledged military attack on Ukraine, parts of which have already been occupied by the Russian and pro-Russian forces. Missiles have been raining on the capital city of Kyiv and there have been many casualties including civilians. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has responded to Putin’s call for an all-out surrender with a statement that said that Ukraine will defend itself in every possible way and win the war. He also urged leaders of the democratic world to interfere and help Ukraine win the war. Russian President Putin, on the other hand, has warned that whichever state helps Ukraine will face “consequences they have never seen”.

Pakistan has kept a diplomatic stance in the situation even with the premier being in the aggressor state during such chaos. The Prime Minister’s Office tweeted that Pakistan had hoped the conflict would be resolved through dialogue and that developing countries are hit hardest due to such conflicts, therefore, working a way out through diplomacy and dialogue is the most suitable option. This stance taken by Pakistan will be better for it as it will not anger the democratic west. However, the PM’s visit at such a sensitive time does make another impression.

It is easy to choose a side this time as Russia is being unfairly aggressive on a much smaller and weaker country. The aggressor has already occupied the region of Crimea since 2014 on the pretext that it was a part of Russia being wrongfully governed by Ukraine. The current attacks come as Ukraine, which closely borders Russia, wants to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). There is much history between Russia and NATO, which is why the move was detested by the Russian state, for all the right reasons. Moreover, the democratic government in Ukraine is West-friendly, which is another concern for Russia. Whatever the reasons may be, this attack could have been thwarted, had Ukraine announced scrapping its plans to join NATO, and the West attesting the words. It can be said the attack was not unprovoked, but it will lead to a great loss of life. Russia must understand it is supposed to adhere to international law and that it cannot trespass another independent state’s sovereignty. It would be better if it withdraws its troops and opts for a dialogue-based solution.

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