Pakistani People Prove Democratic Mettle: Mowahid

Washington, DC This week’s parliamentary poll has punctured the misperception that a fair and transparent vote could not be held in Pakistan, a noted policy analyst has said while observing that the election reflected democratic ethos of the people.
Mowahid Hussain Shah, a foreign affairs expert and former minister, told an American channel in a live program that the election showcased democratic maturity of the Pakistani nation and sent a powerful signal to the world that the nation can hold credible and transparent polls and make democratic progress.
He saluted the people for accomplishing at the ballot boxes what no amount of anti-terror military actions have been able to achieve in other countries facing extremism challenges.
“By rejecting the forces of medieval obscurantism, the people of Pakistan demonstrated their overwhelming belief in pluralism and progress,” he told TV Viewpoint, a program hosted by the eminent journalist, Dr. James Zogby, and telecast live to millions of viewers in Europe, the Middle East, and North America.
On counter-terrorism, Mowahid said Pakistan has done more than any other country in combating terrorism and its forces have suffered more casualties than NATO and US forces combined on the other side of the Afghan border. He said the Pakistani people have been facing the blowback effect from the Afghanistan situation.
Any talk of curbing terrorism, he emphasized in response to a question, has to include efforts to address problems in the occupation situations, such as Kashmir, Chechnya, and Palestine. He said unresolved conflicts breed grievances and argued that the major powers including the US should rethink their policies in the Muslim world.

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