In an apparent attempt to break the unity of the G-4 countries seeking permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council, Pakistan has said it would 'step back' and consider supporting Japan's [Images] bid if Tokyo disassociates itself from the grouping which includes India.
"If the G-4 composition changes, we will review our position. Our relations with Japan are historic, Japan is our largest creditor, the single largest contributor to our debt," Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, who is on a visit to Japan, told the international media there.
"If that framework changes, we will step back and see what to do," he said when a Japanese journalist asked if Pakistan would support Japan in its bid for a permanent seat on the UNSC if it left the G-4.
He, however, hastened to add that it was a hypothetical question and the 'G-4 composition remained as it was.'
Aziz's comments follow Japan's decision to provide a 440 million dollar loan to Pakistan under a revived soft-term official development assistance plan.
Japan has also agreed to resume Yuan loans to Pakistan which was stopped after it conducted nuclear tests in 1998.
Also read: US non-committal on backing India for UNSC permanent seat
Pakistan in recent months has been clarifying that its opposition to G-4 attempts was not India specific.
Aziz recently said that Pakistan's stand must be viewed 'holistically' as the UN was a body which needed reforms and reinvention but reforms should not just relate to the UNSC alone but the entire UN family.
At the meeting, Aziz also said Pakistan would not join in an arms race with India but would maintain a minimum nuclear deterrence, local daily 'Dawn' reported.
He also said Pakistan's nuclear programme was aimed at maintaining strategic balance in South Asia.
Asked about the role of disgraced scientist A Q Khan and his role in the North Korean nuclear programme, Aziz said the chapter stood closed.
To a question whether Pakistan would play any role in denuclearising the Korean peninsula, he said Pakistan had no role in the Korean N-programme and whatever information it had gathered in association with the IAEA had been shared with Japan.
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