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Pakistan Today

Published Date: Dec 26, 2012

PARIS TALKS ON AFGHANISTAN BIG BREAKTHROUGH

Raza Naeem, Literary Critic and Lecturer of Sociology at FAST-NU, Lahore, delivered a lecture on ‘Arab Spring Two Years On, and the Destruction of Gaza: Results, Prospects, Consequences’. PML-Q Secretary General Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed chaired the proceedings.

Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed said that the Arab Spring has changed the status-quo situation and transformed the whole region socially as well as politically. Calling Arab Spring as the most important and defining event in region’s history after Iranian Revolution, he said that both Iranian Revolution in 1979 and Egypt’s uprising occurred on 11th February and in both cases the West was supporting authoritarian governments against people’s wishes.

“Palestine is the core issue in the region whereas unfortunately, the US policy is pro-Israel and reminded that the West’s relations with the Islamic world would remain stressed unless Palestine issue is resolved,” he said adding that Pakistan always sided with Palestinian people and supported their cause at every forum.

Mushahid Hussain threw light on various historical references of Pakistani support such as support during Arab-Israel wars, giving PLO the ‘official status’ in Islamic Conference in Lahore in 1974 and issuance of Pakistani passport to Tunisian Father of the Nation in war of independence.

He also revealed that on March 23 1940, two resolutions were passed by the Muslims of subcontinent, one for Pakistan and the other resolution was passed in favour of Palestine.

Earlier, Raza Naeem delivered a lecture on the history, politics, uprisings, foreign interventions and evolving internal dynamics of Arab word saying that the Arab Spring has not been over yet and it still has to be transformed into a social movement. He advised the audience to be patient regarding democratic outcomes of the uprising as revolutions take time.

“There is no short cut to democracy nor can it be brought through fighter planes or bombs, while uprising in that part of the world has shattered the Arab stereotypes and was an eye-opener for western orientalists,” he said.

He further said that uprising in the Arab world is not a new phenomenon. In fact there are examples of revolutions in Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arab and Yemen right from late 50s till today. These disturbances were crushed by autocratic governments with the help of western powers, with which they have secret agreements.

“The evidences reveal that there have been secret agreements and understandings of the Arab governments with the Western world to protect their interests,” he said while citing the secret agreement of King Hussain of Jordan with Israel, Egypt’s agreements with Israel and joint blockade of Gaza, recent Saudi accord with west on Libya and Bahrain and compromised in collaboration of Palestinian leaders with Israel.

To a query whether oppression, economic factor or external interventions drive uprisings, he responded that urge for liberty, equality and fraternity stimulated the Arab Spring. “People no longer wanted the sheer humiliation and authoritarianism in states which were virtually a client states to the West and totally comprised on laws for ruling elites with no regard to welfare of common man,” he elaborated.