Ruling coalition divided on negotiations with PTI

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The ruling coalition appears divided on the matter of negotiations with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has said that all political parties should sit together to resolve the contentious issues, while the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam(F) have already rejected the idea of talks with PTI.

PML-N Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed has strongly supported talks with PTI while Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah is opposing the idea.

PML-N and JUI-F have refrained from showing flexibility to hold talks with PTI at a time when PTI Chairman Imran Khan has agreed not to himself but his party men are ready to discuss other important national issues, including elections and the devastated economy, with the government.

PPP leader Farhatullah Babar said in a statement after the meeting of the core committee of the PPP chaired by Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Asif Ali Zardari, “It was emphasized in the meeting that closing the door of dialogue is not a solution to the problem. I have decided to approach all the parties involved.”

Farhatullah Babar said that the PPP was of the opinion that the honor and dignity of the judiciary should not be allowed to be hurt in any way, so it is necessary that the issue of many contradictory decisions of the honorable court should be resolved as soon as possible.

Earlier, speaking in the upper house of parliament, Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed said that national unity was the need of the hour. He said that dialogue was necessary to bring the country out of the political crisis, the government should end the ongoing fight with the judiciary and the PTI with the military establishment.

Meanwhile, Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan Ameer Sirajul Haq said in the Sirat-un-Nabi Conference that general elections should be held in July 2023 to prevent uncertainty in the country. He blamed both the ruling coalition and the PTI for the political polarization that led to divisions within and between institutions.

He stressed that the national institutions, especially the judiciary, military establishment and the Election Commission, should remain neutral in the best interest of the nation and the country.

Recently, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah had categorically said that the PML-N would not hold talks with the PTI, a stance confirmed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

“Our party will never sit at a table with Imran Khan, who is a criminal of the nation,” JUI-F leader Maulana Asad Mahmood announced during a speech in the National Assembly. “I want to clearly say that we will not sit with Imran Khan to negotiate and fix the date of elections, he is a criminal and he should be prosecuted under Article 6, this is my party’s stand,” he said.

Earlier on April 3, six partners in the ruling coalition met with some representatives acting as mediators on behalf of civil society and urged all “political forces” to sit together and find a peaceful solution to the current political, economic and judicial crisis.

According to a joint statement issued at the press conference after the meeting at the National Press Club, they also highlighted the need to hold a multi-party conference for this purpose.