Contextualising Pakistan’s Prime Minister’s Parliamentary Eulogy of Osama Bin Laden

Wolf, Siegfried O.

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On June 25, 2020, Pakistan’s military-backed Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan made a statement in the National Assembly in which he glorified Osama Bin Laden (OBL) as a ‘martyr’, using the term shaheed. This is without doubt a landmark event which needs a closer assessment. This SADF Comment aims to shed light on the rationale behind PM Khan’s eulogy of the former Al Qaeda leader and contextualise it within both domestic and regional trajectories. In order to do so, the following points should be highlighted: By describing OBL as a martyr, PM Khan suggests that he ‘was a victim rather than an aggressor’. This glorification of Jihadism and international terrorism was not just a slip of the tongue. The fact that there is no official clarification from the PM’s office - nor a public comment by the country’s powerful military – reveals that the remark indeed reflects the view held by most of the country’s leading political decision-makers. Even more: it is a confirmation of the military’s official policy, of the national political leadership’s inclinations, and that of relevant state institutions. This is already well-known. What is new, however, is that such statements are proclaimed publicly - and in the national parliament, no less. […]

Document type: Article
Publisher: South Asia Democratic Forum (SADF)
Place of Publication: Brussels
Date: 2020
Version: Secondary publication
Date Deposited: 03 Jun 2022 07:00
Faculties / Institutes: Miscellaneous > Individual person
DDC-classification: Political science
Military science
Controlled Keywords: Pakistan, Khan, Imran, Ibn-Lādin, Usāma, al-Qaida, Märtyrer, Dschihadismus, Terrorismus, Militär
Uncontrolled Keywords: Pakistan, Imran Khan, Osama Bin Laden, Al Qaida, Märtyrer, Dschihadismus, Terrorismus, Militär / Pakistan, Imran Khan, Osama Bin Laden, Al Qaeda, martyr, jihadism, terrorism, military
Subject (classification): Politics
Countries/Regions: Pakistan
Series: Themen > SADF Comment
Volume: 192