Imran Khan says Afghans ‘broke shackles of slavery’ as Taliban seize power

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan further spoke about how cultural imposition was tantamount to ‘mental slavery’.
Pakistan PM Imran Khan.(Reuters File Photo)
Pakistan PM Imran Khan.(Reuters File Photo)
Published on Aug 16, 2021 04:09 PM IST
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By hindustantimes.com | Written by Sohini Goswami, New Delhi

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Monday Afghans had “broken the shackles of slavery” while describing the Taliban’s seizure of power in the neighbouring country. Khan further spoke about how cultural imposition was tantamount to ‘mental slavery’, according to Pakistan news platform Dawn.com.

Addressing the launch of a government education programme, Khan further criticised the existence of “English medium schools” that he said led to the adoption of “someone else’s culture” in Pakistan. “When you adopt someone’s culture you believe it to be superior and you end up becoming a slave to it,” the cricketing legend-turned-premier was quoted as saying.

In the same breath, he indirectly likened the ongoing upheaval in Afghanistan with the people of the country breaking the “shackles of slavery".

The Taliban’s takeover of the war-torn nation was completed on Sunday when their armed troops swept into capital Kabul without minimal resistance after days of rapid advances, said to be powered by Pakistan with weapons, logistics and medical aid. Fearful the Islamist militants could reimpose its brutal rule that all but eliminated basic rights of women and minorities, panic-gripped citizens rushed to leave the country. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani also left the country, while the US evacuated its embassy in Kabul. With this, the two decade-old American experiment of remaking Afghanistan also came to an end. 

Also read | Why Ashraf Ghani, Afghanistan's best academic, failed

Amid the accusations against Pakistan of covertly assisting the Taliban, a US Congressman had urged President Joe Biden to impose sanctions on Islamabad unless they "change course." In a letter to Biden, House Representative Mike Waltz said that Pakistan's military strategy is dictating the Taliban.

Khan is scheduled to chair a meeting of Pakistan's security committee to discuss the evolving situation in Afghanistan. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said in a statement Pakistan will present its stance on the current situation following consultations in the National Security Committee meeting.

Also read | As Taliban take control of Afghanistan, a look at who's who of the leadership

“It is imperative that the Afghan leaders work together to address the evolving situation and craft a way forward for sustainable peace and stability in Afghanistan,” Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhry said in a statement.

He said Pakistan will continue to play its constructive role in promoting this goal.

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Friday, October 22, 2021