There are few times in history when international relations pose a challenge and require changing the entire discourse of the world order. Current times can be accredited to the same. The rift between the conflicts has widened, thereby escalating the tensions. In such times, there is a country that is uncertain about its own decisions in foreign policy matters. It perceives every development that involves India as India’s exclusive affair. This can be seen in its decisions on SCO. However, the upcoming Defence Ministers’ meeting provides a second opportunity for it to be considered.
Difference between India and Sri Lanka
Pakistan is currently facing its most severe economic crisis, while India, its neighboring country and the largest in the subcontinent, is enjoying economic prosperity, though with a “speedbreaker.” Pakistan had all the chances to take advantage, but unfortunately, it is hitting the spade on its own foot. Let us better understand it in a broader context.
At the subcontinental level, Sri Lanka and Pakistan have both faced severe economic crises. In the case of Sri Lanka, India played a significant role in providing both financial and resource assistance, even giving assurance to the IMF.
But when it comes to Pakistan, India is reluctant, and why talk about only India when each country is seen as reluctant? What is the reason? The situation in both Sri Lanka and Pakistan is quite similar, with Chinese investments being one of the common factors. Actually, the reason is Pakistan’s poor track record of loan repayment and its biggest entrepreneurial sector, terrorism.
However, there are some instances that show that somewhere Pakistan wants to ease the tensions. At least for now, when they need assistance the most. Still, their leaders are putting their individual egos ahead of their national interests. This is evident from various incidents, like the statements of Pakistan’s Foreign Minister, Bilawal Bhutto. But Pakistan must understand that it needs to take steps by first thwarting terrorism and behaving like a responsible neighbor.
SCO defence ministers meet: an opportunity
India has invited Pakistan’s defence minister, Khawaja Muhammad Asif, and the NSA to attend a meeting under the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). The meeting is to be held in Delhi in April. In the previous meeting of the CJI of the Supreme Courts, Pakistan decided to remain absent. As of this meeting, the report claims that Pakistan has accepted the invitation.
However, SCO is an organization formed by the efforts of China, for whom the future of the organization is crucial. And so, Pakistan does not have many options, but yes, this is an opportunity for it to soften relations and pave the way for future cooperation in bilateral relations. However, it is going to be a big challenge for Islamabad, as this time India has shown the most firm intention against its terrorism and betrayal policies. And it needs to let go of it before taking India into confidence.
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