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After the speech

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29.09.2019

PM Imran Khan addresses UNGA session in New York on Friday. PHOTO: AFP

The fourth part compensated for the first three ones. The speech left a good impact. Not bad for a leader’s first appearance at the UN global forum.

Could it have been better? Sure. Did it do the trick at the end? Yes. And at the end, that is what matters at a time when the situation in Re-occupied Kashmir is inching towards an explosive stage. Prime Minister Imran’s Khan’s speech has set the tone for what must now follow as a substantive action-oriented policy on Kashmir. This policy will need to be multi-dimensional, multi-platform and multi-goal in every sense. Most importantly, it should be a stated and openly declared policy that has no “do-say” gap.

Such a comprehensive policy will need to emerge from within the institutional womb of Pakistan’s state structure. But this time, the state structure that produces such policies may want to try something new: a deeply debated and thoroughly discussed array of options that are taken to the parliament for national consensus.

Let’s get more specific.

1. The Kashmir policy should have a central premise: Pakistan will never renounce its legal and moral position on Kashmir that demands the implementation of UN Security Council resolutions. Will the plebiscite happen tomorrow? Probably not? But then our thinking should not be confined to timelines and deadlines. Instead we should declare to the world that we shall maintain our position against all odds and hold on to it for howsoever long is required — two years, ten years, twenty-five years or two hundred years. Let this premise quell all conspiracies about a “sell-out” or “quiet settlement”.

2. The first stage of the policy debate should be conducted in the National Security Committee that is chaired by the Prime Minister. The members include Ministers of Defence, Finance, Foreign Affairs, Interior,........

© The Express Tribune