Pakistan ‘categorically’ rejects reports about recognising Israel

Islamabad, Pakistan – (WARSOOR) – Pakistan’s foreign ministry has reiterated the country is not considering recognising the state of Israel, in line with existing policy, according to a statement, even as Arab allies have moved to do so.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Pakistani foreign ministry spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri “categorically rejected baseless speculation regarding possibility of recognition of the State of Israel by Pakistan”.

“Pakistan steadfastly supports the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination,” said the statement, which was in line with the country’s position on the conflict.

“For just and lasting peace, it is imperative to have a two-state solution in accordance with the relevant United Nations and OIC resolutions, with the pre-1967 borders, and Al-Quds Al-Sharif as the capital of a viable, independent and contiguous Palestinian State.”

Questions have been raised on whether Pakistan would join Arab allies the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, who moved to normalise relations with Israel in September. A first Bahraini delegation visited Israel last week.

On Monday, Israeli media reported Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had secretly travelled to Saudi Arabia a day earlier for talks with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Saudi’s foreign minister, however, denied the report and Netanyahu’s office did not comment on it.

Since September, US President Donald Trump’s administration has brokered agreements with the UAE, Bahrain and Sudan to normalise their relations with Israel.