With the tweet of the editor of Israeli newspaper Haaretz’s English edition, Ami Scharf, about a private jet landing in Islamabad from Tel Aviv, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government faced uproar by all opposition parties. The government categorically rejected the claim of Mr Scharf, and the opposition failed to discredit the government, as the editor of the paper in another tweet admitted that he had only made a guess.

Israel’s illegal and immoral occupation of Palestinian lands strike a deep hurt in all Pakistani hearts and minds. Pakistan’s refusal to acknowledge Israel as a state is simply because of its attitude towards Palestinian Muslims. Israeli policies are unacceptable for Pakistan. That is the only reason for the refusal to acknowledge Israel diplomatically.

Whether an Israeli plane lands in Pakistan or not, is immaterial. The fact that an Israeli newspaper tried to portray this as a thawing of Pakistan’s stand on Palestine, is a sign that our principled stand on the rights of the people of Palestine, hits Israel where it counts. Israel must accept that the people of Palestine will find support across the globe in the hearts of Muslims. Not just from Pakistan, but from all over the Muslim world. Planes can land a-plenty, that will make no change to Pakistan’s stand on Gaza, and the rights of the Palestinian people to Jerusalem.