Govt, opposition end hours-long discussion on ‘Azadi March’ with no result – Pakistan

Discussions between the government negotiating committee and the opposition Rehbar Committee on the & # 39; Azadi March & # 39; Anti-government ended Friday night without any results.

The two sides initially held talks on Friday night with the government team putting the talks on hold briefly to find time to take the trust of the main government leaders.

The meeting, which was held at the residence of the JUI-F leader, Akram Durrani, in Islamabad, was reconvened after both parties had a discussion within their own groups.

The talks would resume at 10 p.m., according to Senate President Sadiq Sanjrani, but they started around 10:30 p.m.

The members of the Rehbar Committee had also met early in the day, before the meeting with the government, gathered for a discussion with each other.

Defense Minister Pervez Khattak, who led the government side, said the initial talks, which lasted about two hours, were held "in a cordial environment." "Both parties presented their recommendations. God willing, we will soon give the nation good news," he said.

Later, after the second phase of discussions concluded without any progress, he said: "No important conclusion can be reached today, even after much discussion. But the talks will continue."

From the opposition camp, JUI-F leader Durrani said "no conclusion can be reached."

Sources aware of the meeting said DawnNewsTV that the place of protest remained a point of conflict in the first round of discussion, with the government refusing to grant permission to be carried out in D-Chowk and, instead, offered that it could take place in Parade Ground The opposition did not agree with the government's offer.

The sources also revealed that the opposition's demands, which include the resignation of the prime minister, new elections, the supremacy of civil institutions and the safeguarding of clauses related to Islam within the Constitution, in the first round, the talks they remained alone in the place of protest. .

According to the government team, the opposition presented them with a written proposal of the demands. These were discussed with the prime minister before resuming the talks.

Members of the opposition committee that attended included Durrani, Awais Noorani of Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan (JUP), Nayyar Bukhari and Farhatullah Babar of the PPP, Ahsan Iqbal of PML-N, the former president of the National Assembly Ayaz Sadiq, Mian Iftikhar Hussain of the Awami National Party, Hashim Babar of the Qaumi Watan party and Tahir Bizenjo of the national party.

Senior management of the main opposition parties, including PPP president Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, PML-N president, Shehbaz Sharif, and JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, were not present at the meeting.

On the government side, the seven-member negotiating committee was composed of Khattak, the president of the National Assembly, Asad Qaiser, Sanjrani, MNA Asad Umar, the education minister, Shafqat Mehmood, the minister of Religious Affairs, Noorul Haq Qadri , and the president of the Punjab Assembly, Chaudhry Pervez Elahi.

During the course of the first meeting, the Deputy Deputy Commissioner of Islamabad, Waseem Ahmed, was summoned, who arrived a few minutes later to join the discussion.

Earlier, when a journalist asked if the government team had brought the resignation of the prime minister, as demanded by the head of the JUI-F a day earlier, Khattak said the talks about the resignation are "off the table." .

Meanwhile, JUP's Awais Noorani, in an informal conversation with journalists, said the opposition agreed with his demands. "If they have not submitted the resignation today, they will have to do it someday."

March & # 39; Azadi & # 39;

The head of JUI-F, Rehman, announced in June that his party had decided to conduct a long anti-government march to Islamabad in October in an attempt to overthrow the government, which unfortunately had come to power through "false" elections.

The Maulana had first established October 27 as the date of the long march, but then postponed it until October 31, saying that they would instead organize demonstrations on October 27 to express solidarity with the people of Kashmir, which I would observe a black day everywhere. the world against Indian atrocities in occupied Kashmir that day.

The Prime Minister, Imran Khan, last Friday had formed the seven-member negotiating team under Defense Minister Pervez Khattak to involve the JUI-F and other opposition parties before his planned march. The head of the JUI-F had approved, the next day, the secretary general of his party and Senator Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri to meet with the president of the Senate, who, as a member of the government negotiating team, He had contacted by phone and looked for a meeting.

On Sunday, after the PPP opposed the negotiations, Rehman had prevented his party's delegation from meeting with Sanjrani, saying that the Rehbar collective opposition committee would make a decision on talks with the government.

On Monday, after a meeting of the Rehbar Committee, the leader of the JUI-F, Durrani, told the media that the option of negotiations with the government is subject to the party being allowed to conduct a peaceful & # 39 ; March Azadi & # 39; October 27th.

Subsequently, on Wednesday, the government had decided to allow the protest of the "March of Azadi" opposition in Islamabad to take place as long as the parameters established by the courts for legal protest are not violated.

That same day, Khattak and Elahi communicated with Durrani and the JUI-F chief, Rehman, regarding their protest march.

Then it was decided that a meeting between both parties would be held on Friday (today).



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