By Dr Shahid Qureshi :-
The London Post was the first to publish the news of secret meeting with the anti-Pakistan Dana Rohrabacher US Congressman and two self-exiled anti-China and anti-Pakistan MQM-A leader Altaf Hussain and Balooch leader Khan of Kalat. Subsequently Pakistani media followed the story. The timing of the meeting was important as President Donald Trump’s policy statement on Afghanistan and Pakistan was about to come and tone of the US policy was set. The impression in the region about the congressman is that he seems to be an Indian lobbyist.
As we know there are various PR and lobbying companies working in the US who use politicians to get the desired results in the law making or policy making processes in the US institutions be it congress or senate. Sometimes US government itself initiate these politicians to present a bill or law about a country. Many people believe that is another way of politicians get paid. Some politicians also work as consultants or take money for speaking or writing in the media.
On this occasion, US congressman specially met with the individuals who are living in the UK and Altaf Hussain is a British Citizen and is seen as Indian/US/UK agent in the wider Pakistani community. According to reports published quoting the Metropolitan Police: ‘members of the MQM-A have confessed taking money from the Indian Agency RAW on behalf of Altaf Hussian on regular basis.”
Some experts wrote that MQM-A has gone back to its 1990s position: “The (MQM) appears to be on the warpath against Pakistan. Its exiled founder Altaf Hussain has held talks with anti-Pakistan US Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher and exiled Baloch leader Khan of Kalat at the MQM’s International Secretariat in order to work together for the “common cause”. In a statement, the MQM said Altaf briefed the US lawmaker from California about alleged human rights violations and arrests of MQM workers in Karachi. The meeting lasted four hours and members of MQM’s Rabita Committee attended the meeting.
When contacted, an MQM spokesman said the US Congressman expressed his sorrow over the rights abuses and assured the MQM leader that he will take up his party’s (MQM) case at the US Congress and other forums. The spokesman confirmed that Khan of Kalat had also attended the meeting and agreed with Altaf Hussain that they will work together for the common cause. The MQM said it had been agreed that all “like-minded” people will work together in future and increase coordination.
Meeting with the openly hostile US Congressman comes after Altaf’s trusted lieutenant Nadeem Nusrat met Senator John McCain, Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher and Ted Poe in Washington at the end of June 2017 to seek their help. After the media released details of these meetings, including MQM-London’s recent intervention at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, MQM-Pakistan’s leader Farooq Sattar accused London chapter and his former comrades of working against interests of Pakistan and for shaking hands with hostile elements known for their anti-Pakistan bias.”
The overall Impression of this meeting is that nothing is going to change on the ground in Pakistan and CPEC project will continue as normal. However, there is a lesson for Pakistani establishment that: “When you create an asset, take it as a lifelong responsibility and not as pet for Christmas”.
The purpose of the meeting of US congressman was also to re assure other assets in Pakistan especially saying that: “we (US) will not abandon you and we are right behind you with money and protection”. That is all an asset need.
(Dr Shahid Qureshi is senior analyst with BBC and chief editor of The London Post. He writes on security, terrorism and foreign policy. He also appears as analyst on Al-Jazeera, Press TV, MBC, Kazak TV (Kazakhstan), LBC Radio London. He was also international election observer for Kazakhstan 2015 and 2016 and Pakistan 2002. He has written a famous book “War on Terror and Siege of Pakistan” published in 2009. He wrote his MA thesis on ‘Political Thought of Imam Khomeini’ and visited Tehran University. He is PhD in ‘Political Psychology’ also studied Law at a British University. He also speaks at Cambridge University)
Views expressed are not of The London Post