MULTAN - Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said the prevailing economic crisis in the country is the result of money laundering by PML-N leader Hamza Shahbaz and PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari.

Addressing a reception hosted in his honour here on Monday, Qureshi said the Financial Task Force (FTF) had put Pakistan on the grey list due to money laundering. He said that world powers were trying to get Pakistan blacklisted and the PTI government was struggling to save Pakistan from falling on the blacklist. To a query, he said Hamza’s case was sub judice therefore he would not comment on it.

The foreign minister said the government made relentless efforts under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan to steer the country out of the economic crisis and people would see positive impact of these efforts soon. He said the government would strengthen the economy, which would ultimately create new jobs for the youth.

Talking to the media in Kot Mithan, Qureshi said that Pakistan showed tolerance and a wiser behaviour to de-escalate the tension with India. “We released the Indian pilot as a goodwill gesture and we expect the same from India. But our desire for peace and our goodwill gesture should not be misunderstood as weakness,” he warned. He said, “We made the world know Indian designs and now the international community should not remain silent; it should play a role to stop India from any misadventure against Pakistan.” He said that Pakistan would give a matching response if India does any misadventure because Pakistan reserves the right to defence.

Qureshi said that rights violations have surged manifold in the Indian-occupied Kashmir and the world should not ignore the Indian oppression against Kashmiris. He said that Pakistan extended diplomatic, legal and moral support to oppressed Kashmiris in the past and it would continue to do so in future.

The foreign minister said that both the government and the opposition stood united on the issue of national security. “The opposition may do politics but it is time to unite,” he asserted. He said the Foreign Ministry discharged its duties in a better way.

“The OIC summit, which took place in Istanbul following the New Zealand incident, was attended by 54 countries. The summit recommendations were issued on the basis of six points. Of these, four points were part of my speech,” he said.

Referring to result of the Multan by-elections, he said that all political powers united against the PTI, but people expressed confidence in the PTI and rejected its opponents. “We’ll come up to people’s expectations,” he said.