ISLAMABAD–The Parliament’s joint session has entered its third day on Wednesday as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said during the previous day’s sessions that Pakistan is “not in a hurry” to decide on joining the Saudi-led coalition against rebels in Yemen.
Saudi Arabia, the Gulf’s main Sunni Muslim power, has asked Pakistan to join a Saudi-led military coalition that began conducting air strikes last month against largely Shia Houthi forces in Yemen.
Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif begins a two-day visit to Pakistan today and discussions on Yemen are expected to dominate the meetings. The premier also said he welcomed Iranian input.
“Iran should also join the discussion and evaluate whether their policy is correct or not,” PM Nawaz said.
The premier has repeatedly said he will defend any threat to Saudi Arabia’s “territorial integrity” without defining what threat that could be, or what action he would take.
Speaking in the National Assembly, Senator Tahir Hussain Mashhadi commends the government for calling a joint session of the Parliament. “I must urge them, that since they have called a joint session, they must listen to it, learn from it…”
He says parliamentarians represent the opinions, desires of the Pakistani nation.
“Who has benefited from the Arab Spring except the US and Israel? An independent, sovereign state of Yemen has been attacked in a pre-emptive military strike by another independent state. They Saudis are asking another independent Muslim state for military aid.”
The senator says that Saudi Arabia is not under any threat. “SA has a large army, abundance of weapons — then why is it asking Pakistan for help?”
Later, the joint session of the Parliament was adjourned until 10am tomorrow.