PPP Senator Raza Rabbani has demanded President Arif Alvi resign from office over his statement on Palestine.
He was speaking during a session of the Senate on Tuesday, chaired by Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani.
He said the president had held a telephone conversation with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, after which a statement issued by the Presidency said Dr Alvi suggested a “one-state solution” to the Palestine-Israel conflict.
“A one-state solution has never been Pakistan's position,” the senior lawmaker stressed. “We have always taken the principled position of two states.”
“Through the Senate chairman, I demand the resignation of the president over this statement,” Rabbani remarked.
He also asked the caretaker foreign minister to tell the lawmakers what steps the government took after the president’s disastrous statement. He added that 5,000 children had been martyred in Palestine.
The situation in Gaza is getting worse by the day, the PPP senator said, adding that the Muslim world was sitting as a silent spectator over the situation in Palestine.
FM agrees objection justified
Responding to Raza Rabbani’s point of objection, caretaker Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani agreed that the objection was correct, as the Presidency did not issue the statement after consultation with the Foreign Ministry.
“I don't know in what context the president talked about a one-state solution,” Jilani remarked, adding that Pakistan's position has always been a two-state solution.
He further said that after the president's statement, an explanatory statement had to be issued, which was also sent to the OIC Secretariat as well as the United Nations.
The Senate session was adjourned till 10:30am on Friday.
After his telephone call with his Palestinian counterpart, a statement issued by the Presidency had said: “If two states solution was not acceptable to Israel, then a one-state solution was the only way where Jews, Muslims and [a] good percentage of Christians could live to exercise equal political rights.”
However, this press release had to be retracted and another was issued correcting the president's statement.