Pak providing air space, ground facilities to US for access to Afghanistan: Dastgir

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Action against JuD in national interest

No Haqqani safe havens in Pakistan

Islamabad

Defence Minister Mr Khurram Dastgir Khan has said that recent actions against Jamaatud Dawa are part of operation Raddul Fasaad and has nothing to do with the American statements. He said the action has been taken to secure the future of Pakistan and bring an end to terrorism so that no terrorist could target children in Schools. In an interview with BBC’s Urdu Service, Dastgir said while many organisations have been banned at the international level , yet Pakistan was taking action after a great deal of consideration. He said Pakistan cannot take guns and start raiding its people but would take all the decisions after serious thinking.
He termed the Tweet by US President following by statements by different US officials as a height of anti Pakistani thinking and said that the US needed to learn from Pakistan to fight terrorism instead of moving towards animosity. The Defence Minister said today’s Pakistan is more secure and stable which has been achieved after the successful operations and sacrifices of citizens, jawans and officers of the armed forces.
He held India responsible for deterioration in relations between Pakistan and the US and said New Delhi was using Afghan soil against Pakistan. He said the Pak-US relationship has gone beyond friendship and animosity and Islamabad has told Washington in categorical terms that it should not blame Pakistan for their failure in Afghanistan. He rejected reports of any deadline by Washington against Haqqani network emphasising that Pakistan is a sovereign and nuclear power and cannot be given any deadline.
Khurram Dastgir said though talks between between Pakistan and the US have been held at the highest level but the strategic dialogue between the two countries is suspended. He said military assistance by US to Pakistan has almost ended. He advised the US to speak in the language of cooperation as Pakistani nation, elected government and the armed forces have serious reservations over any negative and threatening language.
He elaborated the facilities being extended to the US forces in Afghanistan and pointed out that Pakistan has given half of its air space and land routes otherwise it would be difficult for American access in Afghanistan. Therefore he said instead of “No more the US should work with Pakistan”. The Defence Minister categorically stated that there are no safe havens for terrorists in Pakistan and if there are any, they are being eliminated through operation Raddul Fasaad. The Minsiter said the US is yet to pay $ 10 billion to Paksitan under the coalition support fund. He said Pakistani economy has reached a stage where it can support its armed forces.—INP

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