PakAlumni Worldwide: The Global Social Network

The Global Social Network

Iran-Pakistan Ties: Friends or Foes?

It is commonly accepted that Iran and Pakistan remained the best of friends until the fall of the Shah. Beginning in 1979, the relations between the two neighbors worsened with Imam Khomeni's Islamic Revolution in Iran and General Zia ul Haq's Islamization in Pakistan.

Opposition to Pakistan's Nuclear Program: 

In a book titled "Iran and Pakistan: Security, Diplomacy and American Influence", the Iranian-born American author Alex Vatanka challenges the notion that the rise of sectarianism strained Iran-Pakistan ties.  He argues that the relations began to deteriorate earlier in the decade of 1970s when Shah Mohammad Reza Shah Pehlavi, acting on behalf of the United States, tried to pressure Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to abandon Pakistan's nascent nuclear program.

History of Iran-Pakistan Ties:

Iran was the first country to recognized Pakistan right after the country's independence in 1947. Unlike Afghanistan that opposed Pakistan's admission to the United Nations, Iran enthusiastically supported it.  Iran also helped mediate running disputes between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The relations between the two neighbors grew even closer as both joined the 1955 Baghdad Pact for common defense that was signed by Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey and the United Kingdom. It was renamed CENTO (Central Asia Treaty Organization) after the 1958 coup in Iraq that deposed the pro-West King Faisal of Iraq. Later, a regional cooperation for development (RCD) agreement was signed that included Iran, Pakistan and Turkey, all US allies at the time in 1970s.

1971 Loss of East Pakistan:

Pakistan's loss to India in 1971 East Pakistan war caused both the Shah and Bhutto to reassess bilateral ties.  The Shah felt Pakistan had been permanently weakened by the 1971 war with India. It encouraged the Shah's ambition of becoming the regional hegemon in West Asia and the Gulf region.

While the Shah saw an opportunity to assert Iranian leadership after the events of 1971,  Zulfikar Ali Bhutto sought to rebuild Pakistan's strength and to reclaim its status as a powerful nation in the region. Part of Bhutto's plan included building an atom bomb, an effort that was vehemently opposed by the United States. The Shah echoed the American demands in private meetings with Pakistani leadership.

Pakistan's Ties with Gulf Arabs:

Faced with the American and Iranian opposition to Pakistan's nuclear program after 1971, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, a secular leader married to a Shia woman of Iranian ancestry, sought closer ties with Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Sunni Gulf nations of the GCC. Here's an excerpt of Alex Vatanka's response in an interview with Lawfare journal:

"The fact that he (Zulfikar Ali Bhutto) was Shia had nothing to do with it. Bhutto is focused about India: Who can come to my aid, who can foot the bill for my nuclear program that I need to build up because I know that India is just about to get their hands on a nuclear weapon and I cannot lose that military competition on that front? There is no mention from the Saudis, the Emiratis, the Qataris—all of these famously Sunni nations—oh, we don't like Bhutto because he's Shia, you know? There's no sign of that. This sectarianism is something that unfortunately becomes much bigger of a player in the foreign relations of everybody in the last 15, 20 years because of a lot of other factors."

Complicated Iran-Pakistan Ties:

The relations between Iran and Pakistan oscillate between claims of "brotherly" ties and border skirmishes along Balochistan-Sistan border.

As recently as this week, Iranian President Rouhani said in a meeting with Pakistan Senate President Raza Rabbani that "the Islamic Republic regards Pakistan’s security as extension of its own".

In the last decade, Pakistan’s ties with Gulf Arabs have been uneasy while its relationship with Iran hit an all-time low with regular border skirmishes.

Regular diplomatic exchanges and friendly statements between Iran and Pakistan continue to attempt to reduce tensions while glossing over real difficulties between the military and intelligence services of the two countries.

Summary:

All's not well between Iran and Pakistan. The bilateral relations began to deteriorate in early 1970s when the Shah and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto were still in charge, well before the Iranian Islamic Revolution and Zia ul Haq's Islamization in Pakistan. Iranian-American scholar Alex Vatanka says the key issue at the time was the US-Iran joint opposition to Pakistan's nuclear program that forced Bhutto to turn to Gulf Arabs for help. The difficulties are not rooted in sectarian Shia-Sunni difference. There is a genuine desire and continuing efforts by diplomats on both sides to maintain a good working relationship.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Iran-Saudi Conflict

Pakistan's Nuclear Program

Iran Nuclear Deal

1971 India-Pakistan War

Chabahar vs Gwadar Ports

Did America Contribute to the Rise of ISIS?

Views: 56

Comment by Riaz Haq on August 14, 2017 at 4:30pm

#UAE #ADFD funds Dh1.5 billion (US $408 million) worth of projects in #Pakistan

http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/society/uae-funds-dh1-5-billion-worth-...

Up to Dh1.5 billion worth of sustainable development projects have been financed in Pakistan by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), a new country report said on Monday.
To date, the ADFD, a national entity for development aid, has supported Pakistan with grants and concessionary loans on behalf of the Abu Dhabi government, valued at Dh1.5 billion across nine sustainable development projects.

The ADFD’s country report issued to mark Pakistan’s Independence Day on August 14, highlighted that the nine development projects have significantly contributed to improving socioeconomic conditions in the country.
The projects spanned diverse sectors, most notably transport, water and agriculture, healthcare.
Mohammad Saif Al Suwaidi, Director-General of ADFD, said ADFD’s role in financing these sustainable development projects across Pakistan underscores the fraternal relations and strong bilateral ties that the UAE and Pakistan share.


Stressing the importance the UAE places on supporting developing countries, Al Suwaidi said: “The comprehensive and wide spanning portfolio of development projects supported by ADFD in Pakistan can certainly be attributed to the strong relations between our countries as well as the wise directives, guidance and support of the Abu Dhabi government.”
Al Suwaidi added that ADFD believes in assisting beneficiary governments in achieving their economic, sustainable and development schemes and goals.
“We are pleased that our support to the Pakistani government has elevated living standards and boosted strategic growth in that country,” he said.
Notable projects
Some of the notable projects funded by ADFD in Pakistan include the Dh227 million construction of the UAE-Pakistani Friendship Road, which has helped link the southern and northern areas of the Waziristan region. The 72-km road serves three major cities and 20 villages and facilitates the movement of people and goods.
In the health sector, ADFD administered an estimated Dh107 million Abu Dhabi government grant to develop two healthcare projects in Pakistan. In 2013, ADFD provided Dh94 million to construct the Emirates Hospital — an integrated speciality medical centre equipped with 1,000 beds.
Furthermore, in 2006, ADFD allocated Dh13 million to fit out the Shaikh Zayed Hospital in Lahore with modern and internationally standardised equipment.
ADFD’s contributions in the education sector include a Dh46 million grant earmarked for training colleges. This project led to the construction of three training colleges for individuals living in remote areas. These include Warsak College in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, and Wana College and Spinkai Cadet College — both located in South Waziristan.
ADFD also allocated Dh7 million to fund expansion works at the Shaikh Zayed International Academy (SZIA).
In order to ensure an adequate and reliable power supply, ADFD provided a Dh66 million loan to rehabilitate the Tarbela Dam in 1981.
ADFD and the Government of Pakistan have enjoyed strong and long-standing ties dating back to 1981. The synergies between the two sides continue to drive sustainable socioeconomic development across key sectors that benefit the citizens of Pakistan.

Comment by Riaz Haq on August 14, 2017 at 4:36pm

Success story IDB picks three Pakistani projects as examples

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1384115/success-story-idb-picks-three-...

The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has selected three of Pakistan’s hydropower projects as examples for its report about successful financial projects of the multilateral development financing institution.

The three projects – Khan Khwar, Allai Khwar and Duber Khwar – are currently owned and operated by the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) and were constructed with help from the IDB.

The report will be finalised and presented during the 42nd Annual Meeting of the IDB Board of Governors to be held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on May 17 and 18 for showcasing the organisation’s successful contributions.

Islamic Development Bank offers $500m for TAPI pipeline

The IDB provided financial assistance to the tune of $150.2 million for the construction of the Khwar Projects in Pakistan. This financial assistance included $38.435 million for Allai Khwar, $30.805 million for Khan Khwar and $80.96 million for Duber Khwar.

Comment

You need to be a member of PakAlumni Worldwide: The Global Social Network to add comments!

Join PakAlumni Worldwide: The Global Social Network

Pre-Paid Legal


Twitter Feed

    follow me on Twitter

    Sponsored Links

    South Asia Investor Review
    Investor Information Blog

    Haq's Musings
    Riaz Haq's Current Affairs Blog

    Please Bookmark This Page!




    Blog Posts

    Diwali in Silicon Valley

    Brightly colored festival gift displays at major retail stores and poor air quality in Silicon Valley are reminding Indian-Americans this year of Diwali celebrations at home.

    Big box retailers like Costco know their customers. Merchandizers working for them are stocking up their local Silicon Valley stores with products most in demand before Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, to cater…

    Continue

    Posted by Riaz Haq on October 15, 2017 at 5:00pm — 1 Comment

    Pakistan Meat Industry Experiencing Strong Growth

    Pakistan per capita meat consumption has nearly tripled from 11.7 kg in 2000 to 32 kg in 2016. It is projected to rise to 47 kg by 2020.

    Rising Incomes and Meat Consumption:

    Pakistan's per capita meat consumption has nearly tripled from 11.7 kg in 2000 to 32 kg in 2016. It is projected to rise to 47 kg by 2020, according to a paper published by the United States National Library of Medicines at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  …

    Continue

    Posted by Riaz Haq on October 12, 2017 at 5:00pm

    © 2017   Created by Riaz Haq.   Powered by

    Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service