Pakistan draws redlines for joining Saudi alliance

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has decided to draw certain ‘redlines’ for becoming part of the Saudi-led Islamic Military Alliance against Terrorism (IMAT) in an effort to avoid the negative fallout of its participation in the initiative that has potential to undermine ties with neighbouring Iran.

It was thought that the government had already joined the alliance when in April it granted permission to former army chief General (retd) Raheel Sharif to lead the 41-nation counter-terrorism alliance.

Officials, however, clarified that the final decision had not yet been taken.

What compelled Pakistan to have a second thought was the recent Arab Islamic-US summit in Riyadh where statements from Saudi authorities suggested that the alliance was meant to counter Iran as well as fighting terrorism.

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