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Dr M a statesman for Muslim world: Imran
Published on: Sunday, March 24, 2019
By: Bernama

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan describes his Malaysian counterpart Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as a Muslim statesman who has transformed Malaysia into a model for the Muslim world.

He said Pakistan took pride on the way Malaysia had developed and raised the standard of living under the premiership of Dr Mahathir.

“We followed (the development) very closely as Pakistan has always had good relationship with Malaysia. We admire you for that,” he said in a joint press conference with Dr Mahathir after the Malaysia-Pakistan delegation bilateral meeting here.

Imran said he and Pakistan also admired Dr Mahathir for taking stand on issues which affected the Muslim world, where unfortunately very few Muslim leaders will do that.

“Like the war on terrorism, the way it affected the Muslim world. The way Islamophobia has spread in the western world. The way Muslims are treated because of confusing and deliberate political struggle.

“Any crime that is committed by a Muslim, immediately the whole 1.3 billion Muslims will be blamed for the crime.

This was reflected in the Christchurch killing, a terrorist shooting innocent people, women and children in the mosque, without feeling regretful. We in the Muslim world have been watching you take the stand for what affected the Muslims,” he said.

Meanwhile, Imran said that in the Muslim world there are two leaders who stand out on international issues and transformed the society, they are Dr Mahathir and current Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

 “We watch Malaysia transform and how the standard of living and per capita income had gone up. Now Pakistani labour starts to head for Malaysia jobs created so labour from Pakistan will go to Malaysia,” he said.

He said Dr Mahathir and Erdogan were two examples of how statesmanship changed the country and society.

“During the 1998 Southeast Asia economic crisis, Malaysia was the only one that managed to get out of the crisis through homegrown solutions. We Pakistan now face difficult economic situation and so many things to do to get out from it,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Dr Mahathir said Malaysia and Pakistan can share information in an effort to fight corruption within the two countries.

He said any form of corruption should be stopped as it will make any cost to go up.

Dr Mahathir also agreed with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan that corruption would make a country poor.

“We are very concerned about corruption. You have to pay a certain amount to make sure certain job is done. Sometimes money is stolen by officials and this has to be stopped,” he said.

Meanwhile, Imran said Dr Mahathir had made a remarkable comeback as Prime Minister to combat corruption. 

“ We have been watching you stand against corruption. My party (Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf) started a campaign 22 years ago against corruption. We actually believe that the country is not poor, it is corruption that has made the people poor.

“It is corruption that destroyed the institution. (It is) corruption that takes money that should be spent on human beings, (but) laundered abroad. They impoverished (the nation) and diverted money meant for human development,” he said. — Bernama



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