ISLAMABAD: Chief of Army Staff Ashfaq Parvez Kayani in a statement termed the comments by chairman Joint Chief’s of Staff Committe Admiral Mike Mullen as ‘unfortunate’, and ‘not based on facts’.
In the first official reaction to the slew of public statements made by various levels of the US administration against the ISI and suspected links between the Haqqani network and the Pakistan establishment, Kayani said that he had held a constructive meeting with Admiral Mullen in Spain last week.
He termed the statements following that meeting as very disturbing.
On the question of contacts with Haqqani network, Kayani said that Admiral Mullen knows well which countries are in contact with the Haqqanis. Singling out Pakistan as the chief protagonist is neither fair nor productive, he said.
The COAS also categorically denied accusations that Islamabad or the GHQ was waging a proxy war. Kayani wished that the blame game and public statements would give way to a constructive and meaningful engagement bringing stability and peace to Afghanistan, an objective to which Pakistan was fully committed.
Admiral Mike Mullen while addressing a Senate Armed Services committee on Thursday said called the Haqqani network a “veritable arm” of the Pakistani military intelligence organisation, the ISI. Mullen along with Defence Secretary Leon Panetta said that the ISI was engaged with the Haqqanis, using them as their proxies in Afghanistan, there by indirectly linking ISI to the attacks on the US embassy in Kabul on September 13.