Pakistan Foreign Policy under Quaid-e-Azam


Quid-e-azam Press Conference

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The basic tenets of the foreign policy of the new State of Pakistan were outlined by Quaid-e-Azam at a press conference in Delhi on 14 July 1947. He remarked that the new state will be most friendly to all nations. We stand for the peace of the world. We will make our contribution whatever we can.” These ideas were further explicated on 15 August, when as Governor-General of Pakistan, the Quaid observed: “Our objective should be peace within and peace without. We want to live peacefully and maintain cordial and friendly relations with our immediate neighbors and, with world at large.

We have no aggressive designs against any one. We stand by the United Nations Charter and will gladly make our contribution to the peace and prosperity of the world.” About the doctrine of non-alignment, the Quaid-e-Azam, in his broadcast talk to the people of the USA in February 1948 said: “Our foreign policy is one .f the friendliness and goodwill towards all the nation of the world. We do not cherish aggressive designs against any country or nation. We believe in the principle of honesty and fair-play in national and international dealings, and’ are prepared to make our contribution to the promotion of peace and prosperity among the nations of the world.

Pakistan will never be found lacking in extending its material and’ moral support to the oppressed and suppressed peoples of the world and in upholding the principles of the United Nations Charter.”

Quaid’s thinking and politics

The ideas of justice, equality and fairness informed the Quaid’s thinking and politics regarding international issues. For example, on ‘the emotionally charged issue of the Khilafat in Turkey in 1920, Jinnah as a true constitutionalist, “put down the false and dangerous religious rage” of the zealots, both Hindu and Muslim” since it threatened the stability of the existing political structures and orderly progress along moderate and nationalist lines.

In 1937, following the rejection by the Arabs of the Peel Commission proposal that Palestine should be divided into Arab and Jewish State, leaving Britain with a mandate over a reduced area which would include the holy place of Jerusalem, Quid-e-Azarn expressed strong support for the Arab position and called upon London to honor its pledge of total independence to the Arab people. In his Presidential address to the All India Muslim League delivered at Lucknow on 16 October 1937, the Quaid stated: “Great Britain has dishonored her proclamation to the Arabs which had guaranteed to them complete independence of the Arab homeland and the formation of an Arab Confederation under the stress of the Great War… May I point out to Great Britain that this question of Palestine, if not fairy and squarely met, boldly and courageously decided, is going to be a turning point in the history of the British Empire…..The Muslims of India will stand solidly and will help the Arabs in every way they can ii their brave and just struggle that they are carrying on against all odds.”

The Quaid-e-Azam Interview

The Quaid-e-Azam opposed the partition of Palestine and the establishment of Israel in 1948. In an interview to Mr. Robert Stimson, B.B.C. correspondent on 19 December 1947, the Quaid said,” Our sense of justice obliges us to help the Arab cause in Palestine in every way that is open to us.” Similarly in his reply to a telegram from the King of Yemen on 24 December 1947, Quaid-e-Azam expressed his “surprise and shock” all the UN decision to approve of the partition of Palestine.

Describing the division of Palestine as “outrageous and inherently unjust” the Quaid assured “the Arab brethren” that Pakistan will stand by them in their opposition to the UN decision.” Later, Quaid-e-Azam sent cable to President Truman urging him to “uphold the rights of the Arabs” and thus “avoid the greatest consequences and repercussion The Quaid-e-Azam gave open and unflinching support to North African Arabs in their struggle to throw off the French yoke. He considered the Dutch attack upon Indonesia as an attack on Pakistan itself and refused transit facilities to Dutch ship and planes, carrying war material to Indonesia.” Similarly, Pakistan provided all possible “diplomatic and material assistance to the liberation movement in Indonesia, Malaya, Libya, Tunisia, Morocco, Nigeria and Algeria.”