Some lawmakers in the Wolesi Jirga, the Afghan parliament, once again criticized the government for the diversion of the Pakistani parliament speaker’s plane last week, calling it an intentional act by the government and said it will have dangerous consequences.
Parliament speaker Asad Qaiser was expected to visit Kabul on April 8, but his plane was diverted minutes ahead of landing at Hamid Karzai International Airport over suspicions of unexploded ordnance at the airport.
“The decision by the president damaged relations between the two countries. This in fact is national treason,” said Qazi Nazir Ahmad Hanafi, an MP from Herat.
“Such incidents have bad consequences for Afghanistan. We all know that Pakistan can have both positive and negative roles in Afghanistan’s issues,” said Mahdi Rasikh, an MP from Maidan Wardak.
Another MP said that no foreign official’s trip has been canceled due to minor security threats over the last 20 years, and called it an attempt to prevent the Pakistani delegation’s visit to Kabul.
“Unfortunately, some people have come from the US and don’t know anything about hospitality or honor. They have sat there and said ‘thank you’… They have worked in hotels there and are now president of this country or head of the national security council,” said Allah Gul Mujahid, an MP from Kabul.
But some other lawmakers said the trip was not so important and that the cancellation was due to technical issues.
“It is forty years that Pakistan is killing us. It is forty years that Pakistan is damaging our economy,” said Nadir Khan Katawazai, an MP from Paktika.
“Who was aware of the Pakistani parliament chief and his delegation’s trip?” Gul Ahmad Kamin, an MP from Kandahar, said.
The parliament speaker Mir Rahman Rahmani said that the Pakistani parliament’s chief “is not the Afghans’ enemy” and that he was invited officially to Kabul and that his trip was aimed at strengthening relations between the two countries.
He said those who are Afghanistan’s “real enemies” are escorted to the Presidential Palace.
“Pakistan’s parliament is not our enemy. Those who are creating enmity with Afghanistan, if their flight comes, they will be escorted to the Presidential Palace,” Rahmani said.