Pak, parties, problems

The political turmoil brought about by former prime minister Imran Khan’s wranglings with Pakistan’s two big parties – Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) – in an economically unstable nation is finally impacting its diplomatic dealings. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif issued a terse statement through his office’s media wing saying that Imran Khan’s antics have created hurdles in the way of the country’s efforts to acquire a loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).His Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar, too has blamed Khan’s mismanagement for the country’s dire economic situation many times in recent days, also insinuating that the IMF is holding back on the bailout loan because of political instability. It is not just Imran Khan. Also on the political horizon are the provincial elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab, both of which have recently witnessed an upsurge in violence.These will be followed by general elections towards the end of the year – making it very difficult for the IMF to decide on releasing a loan in unpredictable conditions. Pakistani media is reporting that the IMF agreement with Pakistan, which has been on the verge of materialising for the past many days, is not happening simply because of political instability. Reportedly, the IMF wants an assurance from the country that any future dispensation in the country will respect the agreement signed now for a $7 billion fund.