ISLAMABAD/WASHINGTON: While the White House came out for damage control following Saturday’s deadly Nato air raid in Pakistan’s tribal region, a “deeply shocked” China called for an investigation into the incident.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said President Obama believed the air strike that threw US-Pakistani ties into turmoil was “a tragedy,” adding that “we mourn those brave Pakistani service members that lost their lives.”
“We take this matter very seriously,” said Carney, adding that two inquiries by the International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) in Afghanistan and US Central Command would examine what took place.
“As for our relationship with Pakistan, it continues to be an important cooperative relationship that is also very complicated,” Carney said.
“It is very much in America’s national security interest to maintain a cooperative relationship with Pakistan because we have shared interests in the fight against terrorism,” he added.
China, on the other hand, expressed concerns over the air raid in Mohmand Agency that killed two dozen security personnel.
“China is deeply shocked at the incident and expresses strong concerns and deep condolences to the victims in Pakistan,” foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a news briefing.
“China believes that Pakistan’s independent sovereignty and territory should be respected and that this incident should be earnestly investigated and handled in a serious manner.”
Published in The Express Tribune, November 29th, 2011.