Friday, July 31, 2009

Why Pakistan went to Paris for submarine deal?

PML-Q Senator Sardar Mohammad Jamal Khan Leghari in a surprising revelation shocked the members of the Senate on July 30 by a claim that President Zardari had refused to approve the deal for purchase of German submarines and the file submitted to the Presidency recently had been rejected. He added that a team of Pakistani Naval officials had been receiving training on manning of sophisticated submarine in Germany for one and a half year.The Senator also claimed that the rejection of German submarine was aimed at paving the way for the purchase of French submarines and the one billion dollars were behind the latest defence deal with France.He elaborated that Pakistan already possessed the French submarine technology and needed diversified technology. He demanded that Pakistan Naval Chief should give an in-camera briefing to the legislators to clarify the position.The Senator’s criticism followed a report that Islamabad was tilting towards France rather than Germany which with much struggle had recently cleared the way for export of three submarines to Pakistan.According to defence experts, for Germany it was an economically promising but politically risky deal but despite backdoor work by Indian lobby the Germans had agreed to sell three U-214 submarines built by German ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems to Pakistan for an estimated $2 billion.Defence experts told Pakistan Observer that Germany was ready and was awaiting a formal order from the Ministry of Defence.
A German team of Naval experts had visited Karachi to discuss technicalities and a Pakistan Naval team also visited Germany to make final inspection. According to reports the German government had even agreed to grant federal export credit guarantees worth nearly $1.4 billion.Sources confirm that as the deal was proceeding and 95% ready, President Asif Ali Zardari overruled his military’s preference for the German subs to take up a “better offer” from France. The change of heart was noted when President Zardari visited Paris in May and has long meeting with French President.To the surprise of many Pakistanis on the eve of President Zardari’s visit a French judge accused some “powerful Pakistanis” of having something to do with the murder of 11 French engineers in Karachi in May 2002 as a retaliation for the decision of France’s new government to cease bribe payments from the 1995 deal.Coincidentally, in 1995 too, the Pakistan People’s Party was in power when the government bought three French Agosta 90-B submarines. President Zardari was then Minister for Investment in the PPP Government while now French President Nicolas Sarkozy was a key aide to then French President Edouard Balladur. The two developed a close relationship since then.President Zardari’s decision to turn to Paris for the deal also coincided with reports that PPP Government had decided to appoint a civil servant from the District Management Group as the Ambassador of Pakistan to France. The most unusual appointment was resented by the veteran and serving diplomats at home abroad and Prime Minister had to intervene and cancel the appointment of Mohammed Jehanzeb Khan.
Opposition members here claim that the delay in the issuing of the order for the German submarines that were almost finalized in December 2008 had “something to do with President Zardari’s meeting with President Sarkozy of France in May 2009? “ They also claim that the appointment of a junior civil servant as the envoy to Paris may also be related to this decision.Defence observers say that the Government managed to silence opposition to French deal by claiming that Paris had agreed to sign a peaceful nuclear cooperation deal while Germans were reluctant to deliver such an accord. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had claimed during President Zardari’s visit to Paris that France had agreed to extend cooperation in nuclear technology but French officials clarified that the cooperation would be limited to the safety and security of the nuclear plants.On July 2nd when French Admiral Edouard Guillaud, Advisor to President Sarkozy visited Pakistan he met with President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and Army Chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani.Admiral Guillaud’s visit to Pakistan was considered as part of efforts aimed at further boosting the Pak-French relations in the wake of Zardari-Sarkozy meetings in May this year.PM proposed that the governments of Pakistan and France should chalk out a roadmap for pragmatic cooperation in the field of civil nuclear energy but there was no firm response from French side.
Admiral Guillaud however, assured the prime minister that France would provide military equipment including Tiger Helicopters to Pakistan.Again on July 23 on the occasion of a visist by French Secretary of State for Foreign Trade, Anne Marie Idrac, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani hoped that Pakistan would sign framework agreements with France on defence, security and energy this year and said that Pakistan wanted a long-term strategic partnership with France.Ms Idrac promised her country’s continued support to Pakistan in its efforts to overcome economic difficulties and win the war against terror. She said she would hold detailed discussions on economic and energy agreements. Ms Idrac made it clear that a proposed partnership between Pakistan and France on civilian nuclear energy would be limited to nuclear safety and security.What we propose is something very important, which is the possibility for technical people to discuss very precisely what can be done in terms of safety and security for the existing civil nuclear plants,’ she had clarified.


pakistan wake up if german subs

are better, go for them, then acquire french, this is not time

to play games, germans first

no money for German subs. $2 billion for 3 subs. man! besides given the horrendous devaluation of Pakistani rupee in the last one year, PN is better advised not to squander our foreign exchange.

well defenetly german subs were much better then the french one and thats y pakistan navy went for in the first place.It rips out the hearts of millions of pakistanis when they c their corrupt politicians playing their dirty games putting the national security at stake. money is no issue at this moment cause our neighbors are coming of with nuke subs and also the french subs wont be much cheap either.

Both india and pakistan are getting into a useless arms race.

oh my god, i know german technology for submarine is better than french, but what shall nation do with gorenment?media is not crying over it but median always cry for the death, what a chieldish behaviour we have from pak media, hahahah

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