By Ayesha Khan 3 November 2023
The historical and enduring alliance between Pakistan and the Palestinian cause is deeply entrenched. The pivotal moment in this relationship can be traced back to 1945 when Quaid-i-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founding figure of Pakistan, ardently expressed support for the Palestinians, stating, “The Muslims of India would not remain mere spectators. They would help the Arabs in Palestine by all possible means.” This declaration marked the genesis of Pakistan’s enduring commitment to the Palestinian cause.
Following its independence in 1947, the Pakistani nation has maintained a profound emotional connection with the Palestinian populace, providing unwavering support for their plight. Recent events, particularly the tragic loss of innocent Palestinian lives at the hands of Israeli forces, have further ignited the fervor and anguish of the Pakistani people. The distress and outrage evoked by the atrocities in Palestine have left the Pakistani nation in a state of profound turmoil.
Throughout Pakistan, thousands of individuals, including men, women, and children, have taken to the streets to manifest their heartfelt solidarity with the Palestinian people. This outpouring of support and protest serves as a testament to the profound affinity that Pakistanis hold for the suffering endured by their Palestinian counterparts, underscoring the enduring emotional connection between the two nations.
Pakistan’s position on the Palestinian cause has remained steadfast over the years. The nation has consistently championed the establishment of an independent Palestinian state and has endorsed the concept of a two-state solution as a crucial step towards achieving enduring peace in the Middle East. This stance is emblematic of Pakistan’s unwavering commitment to the principles of justice, self-determination, and peace, reflecting its conviction in the pursuit of an equitable resolution to the Palestinian issue.
Moreover, Pakistan has not hesitated to articulate its concerns regarding the systematic oppression of Palestinians by the Israeli government. This acknowledgment of Israel’s oppressive practices underscores Pakistan’s dedication to the defense of human rights and the dignity of all individuals. It is a position undertaken with the objective of advocating for justice, equity, and the restoration of the rights and freedoms rightfully belonging to the Palestinian people.
Of significant importance is the fact that Pakistan’s dedication to the Palestinian cause transcends mere rhetoric; it is substantiated by concrete actions. Pakistan distinguishes itself as one of the few nations that have taken a leading role in providing humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people. This humanitarian aid, with the aim of alleviating the suffering of Palestinians, has already reached Egypt for further distribution to those in need. This tangible support serves as a testament to Pakistan’s commitment to making a meaningful impact on the lives of Palestinians and contributing to their well-being.
The support for the Palestinian cause extends beyond the general populace; it resonates at the highest echelons of Pakistan’s leadership. The Chief of Army Staff (COAS) of Pakistan, in a statement issued on October 17, 2023, unequivocally affirmed that the Palestinian people enjoy diplomatic, moral, and political support from the Pakistani nation. This endorsement of the Palestinian cause emanates from one of the most influential figures in Pakistan, reinforcing the nation’s unwavering dedication to the principles of justice and peace.
The COAS further emphasized Pakistan’s commitment to support the principled stance of the Palestinian people, advocating for a just and enduring resolution to the Palestinian issue and an end to the unlawful occupation of their territories, as well as the safeguarding of sacred places significant to Muslims. This statement reaffirms that Pakistan’s support for the Palestinian cause is not a fleeting sentiment but rather a deeply ingrained, enduring commitment.
The people of Pakistan remain resolute in their support for the Palestinians’ right to self-determination, reflecting Pakistan’s belief in the fundamental right of all nations to chart their own destinies. Pakistan not only demands but also anticipates immediate intervention by the international community to halt the escalating conflict and prevent further loss of precious lives. The expectation is that the global community will undertake substantive actions to address the root causes of the Palestinian issue and facilitate a just and lasting resolution.
In summation, the bond between Pakistan and the Palestinian cause is deeply rooted in historical ties, principled values, and shared sentiments. From the pronouncements of Quaid-i-Azam to the declarations of the COAS, Pakistan has consistently demonstrated unwavering support for the Palestinian people. The recent exhibitions of solidarity and the provision of humanitarian aid stand as tangible demonstrations of this dedication. Pakistan stands resolutely in favor of justice, self-determination, and peace and calls upon the international community to align with these values. The support of the Pakistani nation for the Palestinian cause serves as a testament to the enduring spirit of solidarity and the pursuit of a just and peaceful global order.
The writer is an independent analyst based out of Islamabad, Pakistan.