FO spurns ‘fabricated’ report that claims Pakistan sold arms to Ukraine for IMF deal


Monitoring Desk

ISLAMABAD: The foreign office on Monday vehemently rejected claims that Pakistan agreed to supply weapons to Ukraine in return for securing an International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout in July, saying the country maintained a “policy of strict neutrality.”

The rebuttal from the foreign office came after The Intercept, a US publication, claimed in its latest report that Pakistan supplied weapons to Ukraine via the United States in order to secure the IMF deal.

The publication backed its claims by two sources with knowledge of the arrangement, saying that internal documents from both the Pakistani and American governments confirm the development.

“These arms sales were intended to supply the Ukrainian military, hence, forcing Pakistan to take a side in the Russia-Ukraine conflict,” it claimed.

The standby agreement signed in July allowed Pakistan to avoid a potential default as its foreign reserves were depleting fast.

Responding to media queries on the latest Intercept story alleging sale of Pakistani weapons to Ukraine to get IMF bailout package for Pakistan, the Spokesperson, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mumtaz Zahra Baloch, rejected the story as “baseless and fabricated”.

“The IMF Standby Arrangement for Pakistan was successfully negotiated between Pakistan and the IMF to implement difficult but essential economic reforms. Giving any other colour to these negotiations is disingenuous.

“Pakistan maintains a policy of strict neutrality in the dispute between Ukraine and Russia and in that context, does not provide any arms and ammunition to them. Pakistan’s defence exports are always accompanied with strict end user requirements,” she added.

In the past such reports also published claiming Pakistan was supplying weapons to Ukraine through a third country. However, both Pakistan and Ukraine denied such an agreement.

In July, the Ukrainian foreign minister undertook a first ever visit to Pakistan. During the visit both countries denied having entered into any arrangement that envisaged Pakistan supplying weapons to Ukraine against the backdrop of Russian invasion.

The Ukrainian foreign minister, however, said his country wanted Pakistan to be on his side.

Pakistan has tried to tread carefully since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Despite immense pressure, Pakistan refused to vote on a UN resolution condemning Russia. Islamabad has abstained from voting on all occasions.

The US and European countries, nevertheless, wanted Pakistan to take a more clear stance on the Russian invasion.

Officials said Pakistan always adhered to the policy of maintaining neutrality in such situations.

The latest claims, however, reignited a debate whether Pakistan had accommodated the US quietly while taking a different stance publically.


Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.