WASHINGTON: Prime Minister Imran Khan, in an interview with Fox News on Monday, talked about prisoner swap of Dr. Shakil Afridi and Dr. Aafia Siddiqui with the US.
When asked about jailed Dr. Shakil Afridi, the prime minster said that in Pakistan, he is considered a spy and it is a very emotive issue here. 'The way it (the OBL Operation in Abbottabad) was done it really embarrassed Pakistan at a time when we were ally with the US in war on terror.
You are a prime minster, you can make a decision can’t you, Fox News Special Report anchor Bret Baier asked.
“There are some decisions in a democracy that even a prime minister finds difficult to make, because we do have an opposition.”
But this is something that can be negotiated, he added.
We also have someone in US prison, a frail woman called Afia Siddqui and we could negotiate a swap, the prime minster said.
“The talks have not started yet, we know that US wants Shakil Afridi and we could negotiate.”
Meeting with Trump
“I was very happy with the meeting, I found President Trump refreshing and someone who is straightforward, no juggling of words,” he said after his talks with the US president at the Oval Office.
He said Pakistan and the United States were important allies in the war on terror and both the countries suffered loss due to mistrust in the past.
On question of nuclear war, the PM said nuclear war is not an option and India must abandon its nuclear weapons.
“If India complies with this demand Pakistan will also not use nuclear weapons.”
He said Pakistan has a comprehensive and effective nuclear command and control system.
Imran Khan stated that the armed forces of Pakistan are professional forces and are fully capable of dealing with every challenge.
Prime Minister said the United States is the only country which can play a role of mediator between India and Pakistan to resolve the issue of Kashmir.
Taliban talks: ‘Most productive so far’
Prime Minister said that only elections could bring peace in Afghanistan as the United States has been fighting a war in the country for the many years but failed to bring peace in the war torn country.
On talks with Taliban and Pakistan’s role in bringing peace, Imran said ‘these have been the most productive so far’.
“We are very closed to secure release of a few foreigners including an American who are held hostage in Afghanistan.” We hope to give some good news in next 48 hours, said he.
Talking about US-Iran standoff, the prime minister said that it could affect the peace and economy of the region. Pakistan would like to play every possible role to end this conflict because it will affect the whole region, the PM said.