Do you think Cameron was right to speak out?

Was David Cameron right to openly condemn Pakistan's stance on terrorism?

Despite concern that his comments have inflamed Muslim opinion in this country, David Cameron refuses to apologise for his blunt take on Pakistan.

The dispute started after the Prime Minister made remarks during a trip to India – an old enemy of Pakistan.

He denounced Pakistan for not having done enough in their fight against terrorism. He warned the country about ‘promoting the export of terror’, and said more must be done to ‘crack down on and eliminate’ terrorists.

But despite angry reactions in Pakistan, which included a mob burning an effigy of Cameron in Karachi over the weekend, Cameron has not withdrawn his statements.

The right way is to ‘discuss these things frankly, openly and clearly,’ he tells the BBC. ‘It is what people expect of their government.’

But foreign secretary David Miliband is one of many MPs who has condemned Cameron’s outspoken comments. ‘There is a fine line between a straight talker and a loud mouth,’ he says.

Miliband also criticised Cameron’s lack of diplomacy. ‘We need a prime minister that understands the complexity of diplomacy and so far Cameron has failed to proved himself as the standard-bearer we need around the world.’

There is the worry that Cameron has not only worsened the situation for British troops in Afghanistan, but has also risked alienating the Pakistani community here.

Labour MP Khalid Mahmood agreed that the Pakistani community was angered by the Prime Minister’s comments. He feels Cameron has not acknowledged the sacrifices that Pakistan has made on the war on terror.

But not everyone feels the same way. Many members of the press and public have come out in support of David Cameron, believing he was right to assert his opinion.

The Times leader has  defended the Prime Minister, stating that ‘neither Mr Cameron nor his policies are immature.’

The Independent agree. While the newspaper has commented that he must make a ‘more nuanced’ version when he meets Ali Zardar, it stated that David Cameron had every right to speak out.

What do you think? Was David Cameron right to speak out against Pakistan? Or do you agree with David Miliband and think Cameron has now put our relations with Pakistan at risk? Whatever your thoughts, Marie Claire wants to hear them today by posting your comment in the box below.


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