Pakistan helped connect China to the rest of the world by operating the first international flight from Karachi to Beijing, said former federal minister Dr Javed Jabbar.

Before that, China did not have international flights, said Jabbar during a lecture on ‘Pak-India Relation: Issues and Prospects’ on Thursday at Karachi University. In the year 1971, Pakistan facilitated America’s secret link to China, claimed Jabbar. This allowed the then communist state to get United Nations’(UN) membership, he said.

Hostile relations

Pakistan is termed as a security state, but in Jabbar’s opinion, it is the most insecure state. “At the time of its creation, Pakistan was the most insecure state of the region,” said Jabbar. Its two neighbouring countries, India and Afghanistan, were not willing to accept its existence, he said.

“The Indian leadership in 1947 claimed that Pakistan will not survive more than six months,” he recalled. On the other hand, Afghanistan opposed the membership of Pakistan in UN, he said. “When one of your neighbours is making statements against your survival and the other is not ready to accept your existence, naturally you will seek some form of security.” This is why Pakistan felt the need to seek military aid from United States of America, he added.

Understanding 1971

“People use the example of 1971 to point out that it signifies the failure of the Two-Nation Theory,” said Jabbar. However, they need to realise that Bangladesh did not join India, he claimed. “Now it’s two nations and three states.”

When asked who should be held responsible for the 1971 events leading to the break-up of the country, Jabbar said that Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was adamant to rule and his ‘aggressive’ behaviour escalated the violence. But his stance was legitimate, he claimed.

Soviet invasion

Speaking on the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, Jabbar said that till today, Pakistan continues to suffer from its effects. Due to the invasion, 15 million refugees came to Pakistan, claimed Jabbar. “More than two million continue to reside here.” He said that no such example could be seen in rest of the world.

“Afghans have complete freedom to buy land, use transport, health and education facilities in Pakistan,” he said.  A few years later Afghans will become our brothers in blood, he said.

For Pakistan