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Pakistan released Indian pilot in the national interest: FM Qureshi

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Wednesday said Pakistan released Indian pilot [Abhinandan Varthaman] in the ‘national interest’, ARY News reported.

“The Indian jets were shot down by our Pakistan Air Force (PAF) pilots Hassan Siddiqui and Nauman Ali Khan. Both are our national heroes,” Qureshi said in the National Assembly today.

He said the recent steps taken by the government of Pakistan were in the interest of the country. “We gave a befitting response to India when it was required,” he added.

Read also: Decision to release Indian pilot is gesture to de-escalate situation: Qureshi

Qureshi appreciated the opposition parties for backing government call for boycotting Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) conference, and uniting for Pakistan. He, however, said no one was allowed to speak against Pakistan in the OIC session.

He vowed the government would implement the National Action Plan in letter and spirit. “But questions remain whether what caused obstacles in implementation on the NAP”. He asked who was ruling the country when Pakistan was put on a black list.

“What were the Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz doing when Pakistan was being pressurized by the international community,” he questioned.

He asserted that Pakistan was now heading towards peace. Responding to opposition’s castigation over economic problems faced by the country, the foreign minister said previous governments were actually responsible for economic de-stability instead of the current government.

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