As it sounded unconvinced over the government’s statement on the Yemen crisis during the joint session of parliament, the Pakistan People’s Party called on Wednesday for holding an in-camera meeting of parliamentary leaders over the issue.
A meeting of the PPP’s central executive committee, presided over by Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari at Bilawal House, discussed multiple issues, but media briefing after the hours-long sitting suggested that it was the growing crisis in the Middle East which consumed most of its time. “We believe that information on the subject is still not being shared,” PPP’s Vice President Sherry Rahman told reporters after the meeting. Qamar Zaman Kaira, Farhatullah Babar and Latif Khosa were also present. “This [Yemen crisis] is a very sensitive issue, but at the same time dangerous as well. So there should be an in-camera session for parliamentary and political party leaders so they can understand the sensitivity of the issue and get a whole picture of the situation.”
Her thoughts were also echoed in a statement issued by the Bilawal House after the meeting. Ms Rahman made it clear that the party had called for the in-camera session only for the leaders of parliamentary and political parties. “It was observed that the party’s first demand of calling a joint session on the subject has been initiated,” said the statement. “It was, however, noted that unfortunately, the parliamentary proceedings so far have still not yielded the level of transparency needed to make an informed decision on the government’s policy. “Given the potential dangers of the situation in the Middle East, the PPP demanded an in-camera session where key policy contours of foreign and national security policy are deliberated after a full briefing by the government, including the options put forward by all operational stakeholders.”