- FO calls The Intercept story “baseless and fabricated.”
- Giving any other color to Pakistan-IMF talks is ‘false’: Baloch.
- He says Pakistan does not provide them with weapons or ammunition.
The Ministry of External Affairs on Monday rejected a foreign media report claiming that Pakistan was allegedly selling arms to Ukraine to get the bailout package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
In his “baseless and fabricated” report, The interception – an online news organization – claimed that Islamabad was secretly selling weapons to kyiv as part of the deal reached with the Washington-based lender.
“These arms sales were intended to supply the Ukrainian army, forcing Pakistan to take sides in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine,” the report states.
Responding to media queries about the false report, FO spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch categorically rejected the story as “baseless and fabricated”.
“The IMF Reserve Arrangement for Pakistan was successfully negotiated between Pakistan and the IMF to implement difficult but essential economic reforms. Giving any other color to these negotiations is false,” the spokesperson said.
He further said that Islamabad maintains a policy of strict neutrality in the dispute between Ukraine and Russia and in this context does not provide them with weapons or ammunition.
“Pakistan’s defense exports are always accompanied by strict end-user requirements,” he added.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister rejects media speculation
On July 20, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, who arrived in Islamabad on a two-day official visit, denied media reports claiming that Pakistan was supplying weapons to Kiev amid its ongoing conflict with Russia.
Addressing a joint press conference with then foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari in the federal capital, Kuleba said there was no arms supply deal between Pakistan and Ukraine.
He also thanked Pakistan for supporting Ukraine’s stance on its sovereignty and security.
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister had also expressed interest in boosting trade and economic ties and said the country looked forward to holding the inaugural meeting of a Pakistan-Ukraine commission on economic cooperation.
Ukraine considers Pakistan a good partner and is ready to work in the field of food security, he added.
Ukraine’s top diplomat also praised Pakistan’s humanitarian assistance to the conflict-affected people of the country.
Speaking on the occasion, Bilawal emphasized the importance of peaceful resolution of disputes and conflicts through dialogue and compromise, saying Pakistan was ready to support peace initiatives for lasting stability in the region.
In July this year, the IMF had deposited $1.2 billion into the account of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), raising hopes of economic stability for the cash-strapped nation as it teetered on the brink of default. for several months.
Earlier, the global lender’s executive board approved a $3 billion SBA under a nine-month program, which came after eight months of tough negotiations on fiscal discipline.
Pakistan had reached a staff-level agreement with the IMF in June, securing a short-term pact, which secured more financing than expected for the crisis-hit country of 230 million people.