Pakistan PM: We will not recognize Israel until Palestinian state formed

"We cannot ever accept Israel as long as Palestinians are not given their rights and there is no just settlement."

PAKISTAN’S PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan speaks in Islamabad earlier this year – no ties with Israel seem imminent (photo credit: REUTERS)
PAKISTAN’S PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan speaks in Islamabad earlier this year – no ties with Israel seem imminent
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Tuesday that Pakistan will not recognize Israel as a state until there is a state for the Palestinian people as well, during an interview with Dunya News.
This comes after the historic agreement that was reached between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, in which the UAE officially expressed its recognition of Israel.
"Whatever any country does, our position is very clear," Khan said.
He added that, "When you talk of Israel and Palestine, we need to think: Will we be able to answer [God] if we abandon those people, who have faced every kind of injustice and whose rights were taken away?
"My own conscience will never allow me to do this; I can never accept it," he concluded, according to Al Jazeera.
Khan claimed that accepting the State of Israel is equivalent to giving up Pakistan’s stance on Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). “The case of Palestinians is similar to people of Kashmir – and their [Palestinians'] rights have been snatched and they have been suffering Israeli atrocities.”
Following the announcement of the Israel-UAE agreement, thousands of Pakistanis took to the streets of several cities on Sunday, denouncing this controversial deal with the words "Down with Israel," "UAE-Israel deal on US pressure unacceptable" and "Pakistanis stand with Palestinians," among others.
The Palestinian reaction to Pakistan's allegiance took the form of a letter sent from the Embassy of Palestine in Islamabad, reaffirming their support of Pakistani leadership.
“On behalf of Palestinian people and the government of State of Palestine, the Embassy of Palestine, Islamabad, conveys sincere thanks for extending all sorts of support to Palestinian cause, and especially for condemning, in the strongest terms, the Israeli aggression towards Palestine. We Palestinians consider Pakistan as our second homeland, and Pakistanis as our dearest brothers, who always supported Palestine on every forum of the world,” the letter read.
The letter also praised the support of previous Pakistani governments over the years, saying that “ever since the creation of Pakistan, every government has always supported the just cause of Palestine on all the forums. The embassy heartily appreciates the stance of Imran Khan, the prime minister of Pakistan, when, answering to the question about Israel, said that the founder of Pakistan had made it clear that Israel would not be recognized until a just and fair solution to the Palestinian problem is given.
"The prime minister said we will be answerable to Allah on Palestine issue, and his conscience will never allow accepting Israel without a solution to the Palestinian issue. He said that Pakistan’s position is very clear: Pakistan can never recognize Israel. If we surrender to Israel, then we must leave Kashmir.”
The embassy thanked Imran for such a strong response and appreciates every individual of Pakistan, including political parties, media, civil society, who is observing solidarity with Palestine in any possible way.
"We are hopeful that this support will be with us until we get an independent State of Palestine with Jerusalem Al Quds as capital."
Along with Pakistan, Saudi Arabia also maintains its policy of not making ties with Israel official until there is peace with the Palestinians, Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan said on Wednesday.
"Peace must be achieved with the Palestinians on the basis of international agreements as a precondition for any normalization of relations," he said. "Once that is achieved, all things are possible."
Tamar Beeri contributed to this report.