Emergence of Regional Security Structure in the Backdrop of Rising Asia
By News Desk
On 16th November 2020, Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS), Islamabad organised an online international conference on the topic of “Emergence of Regional Security Structure in the Backdrop of Rising Asia”. This session was aimed to discuss various issues and topics related to security challenges and issues which have been raised in Asia and how a new regional security system is emerging with the rise of Asia.
Ms. Minahil Shawal Afridi, Research Executive, CGSS welcomed all the esteemed panellists in the conference and gave a brief overview of the purpose for holding this International Online Conference.
Dr. Shireen Mazrari, Federal Minister of Human Rights, Government of Pakistan emphasised that since Pakistan has three nuclear armed States in its vicinity, Pakistan needs to revise its policies and ties with the US. She further said that relentless pursuit of nuclear technology by India is a danger for the region and gives India combat cloud capacity. Post 9/11, Pakistan’s external threats became more acute especially in the form of Afghan war and India and US are creating threats by their strategic alliance for China and this region at large.
In the end, she gave her observation that Pakistan cannot have a strategic partnership with US anymore because of their demands of pulling strings on relations with China and US-India military cooperation. US wants Indian hegemony in the region and Pakistan cannot accept it. Pakistan needs to have a reality check of our relations with US. Reassessment of security threats for Pakistan.
Ambassador Riaz Hussain Khokhar, Former Foreign Secretary of Pakistan spoke about relations between Pakistan, China and India.
He gave his opinion that relations between Pakistan and China are deep-rooted and many prominent Pakistani and Chinese presidents in the past have put their efforts to expand this relationship. However, India China relations have been tumultuous because India thinks it is a rival of China in this region.
He warned the audience that Indian threats to Pakistan are real. US policy of containment of Central and South Asia is to shrink Chinese, Iranian and perhaps Pakistani presence in this region by backing India. India is also misusing Afghanistan against Pakistan for many years now.
Pakistan should rely on its strength and should eliminate threats against it with the help of unwavering Chinese support.
Dr. Farid Shafiyev, Chairman of Center of Analysis of International Relations, Baku, Azerbaijan highlighted and appreciated Pakistan’s role in helping Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and discussed prospects of projects between Azerbaijan and other regional countries including Pakistan.
He also suggested that, to improve regional stability in the region, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and other countries should engage in joint projects for mutual development.
Ambassador Abdul Basit, Former High Commissioner of Pakistan to India, highlighted Pakistan’s past effort for nuclear deterrence in the region and how India showed cold shoulder towards these peaceful efforts. He also emphasised that Pakistan should not shy away from using its capabilities to secure itself from regional threats against it.
Dr. Zafar Nawaz Jaspal, School of Politics and IR, Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad discussed how India’s foreign policy of non-alignment has been tarnished by BJP’s expansionist policies in the region. He gave a glimpse of implications of how volatile power transition in India can change this region.
Mr. Sadullo Rasulov, Head of Department, Institute of Strategic & Regional Studies under the President of Republic of Uzbekistan stressed that conditions for security and sustainability in Central Asia is that joint support and collaboration between countries in the region should be established. He highlighted how his government under Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev has taken concrete steps in this regard under SCO-Afghan collaboration initiative.
Dr. Khurram Iqbal Head of International Relations department, National Defence University, Islamabad highlighted historical pattern of how European countries exploited this region. He discussed how seeds of discord were sown by English colonialism in this region in the form of regional disputes while their withdrawal from this area became imminent. His thought-provoking analysis of alarming instability in this region due to extremist government policies in India and US India collaboration for undermining security threats in this region also answered many questions regarding this topic.
This online international conference was attended by 50 participants including students and experts from international relations and other diverse fields and was also viewed live on Facebook by a large audience.