Foreign Minister Zafarullah Khan overnight issued Pakistani Passport for Ahmed Balafrej Morocco’s First Foreign Minister to address General Assembly from Pakistan’s Platform
“The creators of Pakistan had worked tirelessly for its Independence so that they can create a state which would be respected throughout the world. A state that can speak for Muslims and protect their freedom. They did not want it to be a buffer state neither a pawn in international powers diplomacy for this region. They wanted to create a state that can defend and protect the rights of Muslims in the United Nations and outside. For many decades Pakistan had a assertive foreign policy and was a spokesperson for the oppressed Muslims. It seems very far fetched keeping in view today’s turmoil but good old strong Pakistan was a reality. Following is one such incident.
Morocco was fighting for its independence from French influence. Pakistan met its toughest opposition when it spear headed the movement for independence of Maghreb which involved Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria. Pakistan tried to take the question of self determination for Morocco twice in the general assembly but failed. Ultimately Pakistan succeeded in putting the Morocco question in 9th general assembly agenda backed by Afro-Asian groups. Ahmed Balafrej was the Prime Minister of Morocco at this time and was the representative of Morocco in the UN. When he tried to speak on behalf of Morocco he was interrupted by the French officials who claimed that since his country was under their influence he was not allowed to speak and his passport was revoked by the French. Seeing this Zafarullah Khan made arrangements for a Pakistani Passport to be issued to Ahmed Balafrej overnight. This put pressure on France to open negotiations with Morocco and Morocco gained its independence in 1956. The King of Morocco Sultan Muhammad proudly displayed a Pakistani Passport in his office since this incident and would tell everyone about its critical role in their independence.That was when Pakistan was Pakistan a country that championed the rights of Muslims.”