The one thing that Pakistan had been lacking was diplomatic efforts, but now the ‘Rabbani-Kayani Charm Offensive’ launched in Brussels has brought great change in how the world views us. The things that had not been in favor of Pakistan are now beginning to change, to become relatively favorable, albeit at a very slow pace. Both Gen Kayani and Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar embarked upon the journey to bring Pakistan’s anti-terror efforts to be viewed positively. Considering the feedback both have received from the European Union and the others present there, it appears that Pakistan may finally be accepted as a game changer and not a game spoiler.

The major move that is being considered as a positive indicator is the release of the Taliban prisoners by Pakistan at the behest of the Afghan High Peace Council for furthering the reconciliation initiatives taken by the Afghan authorities. Furthermore, Pakistan has also agreed to aid the Afghans by participating and organizing a joint Ulema Conference proposed by them, the aim of which would be to denounce violence and suicide attacks in the region.

Pakistan, with its display of joint civil-military diplomacy has moved up a notch internationally as the EU Foreign policy chief was found describing Pakistan as a “significant country in the region” that is playing its due role for the peace and stability of the region. Moreover, Nato’s Rasmussen recognized that “Pakistan has paid a high price” in fighting terrorism, adding, “The alliance stands together with you to combat this scourge”. Nato has also promised to turn its relationship with Pakistan into a strategic partnership and promised that the alliance will not leave a ‘security vacuum’ in the country after the withdrawal of its troops. Surely great things can be achieved by taking one small step, and in this case it is a mutual convergence of the state and its institutions.

DR NIDA SHAMI,

USA, December 7.