Is Shireen Mazari Replacing Shah Mehmood Qureshi As FM After He Irked Saudi Arabia?

Over the past few weeks, there are ongoing rumors that secretary of state Shah Mehmood Qureshi could rather be replaced with the Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari. the govt is trying to repair its damaged relations with Saudi Arabia thanks to the remarks made by Qureshi.

Earlier this month, Qureshi had accused the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) of taking the Kashmir issue very lightly. His remarks were seen by Saudi Arabia as a blatant attack on its leadership of OIC.

Addressing to an area news channel, Qureshi said, “I am once more respectfully telling OIC that a gathering of the Council of Foreign Ministers is our expectation. If you can’t convene it, then I’ll be compelled to ask Prime Minister Imran Khan to call a gathering of the Islamic countries that are able to stand with us on the difficulty of Kashmir and support the oppressed Kashmiris.”

On Sunday, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, amid the top of the Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt Gen Faiz are already in Saudi Arabia to satisfy its leadership in an effort to fix damaged ties.

General Bajwa’s visit was “primarily military-affairs oriented,” as per a Pakistani army spokesperson. However, military and officialdom have told Reuters that Bajwa would attempt to calm a situation. If he fails to try to to so, it could hurt Pakistan’s financial institution foreign reserves.

Saudi Arabia gave Pakistan a $3 billion loan and $3.2 billion oil credit facility to assist its balance of payments crisis in late 2018.

Irked by Islamabad’s demands for Riyadh, Saudi Arabia has forced Pakistan to pay back $1 billion early and is demanding another $1 billion of the loan.

Meanwhile, Mazari publicly criticized Qureshi, saying his statements had disappointed both the Kashmiris and PM Imran.

Her statement is now being viewed because the initiative to possibly replace Qureshi and pacify the Saudis. Mazari’s statement also suggests the govt is distancing itself from the statements and actions of Qureshi.

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