The Foreign Office earlier on Thursday contested presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s recent statement naming Pakistan among countries which pose threats to the United States.
Trump, who is known for controversial statements, had said people with roots in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Somalia pose threats to the US in the wake of the Orlando mass shooting.
Responding to Trump’s claims, FO spokesperson Nafees Zakaria insisted that Pakistanis living the US had positively contributed to the development of that country.
“Let me throw some light on what the Pakistani diaspora has actually done in the US. There is large Pakistani community, I think a couple of million in number. They have been there for ages and they have contributed significantly to the development of that country,” he told a weekly news briefing.
“Whether it is their GDP, or the health, engineering, science and technology sectors, you will find Pakistanis working in all these sectors with dedication. Their services have been regarded and acknowledged time and again,” the spokesperson added.
Zakaria said various levels of leadership in the US had lavishly praised the Pakistani community and communities from other countries for helping shape the US into “what it is today.” He also drew attention towards a Muslim ex-marine who saved the lives of tens of people inside the club.
“We need to reflect on these kind of acts also which Muslims are performing over there and the contributions Muslims have made over there,” Zakaria emphasised. He said there was a significant presence of Muslims in these Western countries and they had significantly contributed towards economic and political development in those countries.
The spokesperson also said Pakistan would formally join the key regional grouping, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), as its full member next week.
Pakistan and India were granted full membership of SCO in July last year at a summit also attended by the prime ministers of the two countries. Now after fulfilling the formalities, Pakistan would be formally admitted as SCO’s full member, Zakaria said.
SCO was formed in 2001 and Russia sees the organization as a counterweight to Western alliances. Its member-states include China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.