ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari on Friday denied that Pakistani armed forces were involved with militants in Afghanistan.
The president, addressing a joint news conference Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said there was a “residue” of the war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, adding that there was drug trade worth billions of dollars going on in Afghanistan and that he had called for the US to pay attention to this matter.
Zardari said that he had met Karzai and that they could not deny that were people from both sides who were involved in militancy. “This is a world problem… they have left the baby with us.”
Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad said that nuclear-armed nations were not superior to others.
“(The) nuclear bomb is not going to bring about superiority,” he told the same news conference, where he addressed a predominantly English-speaking audience through a translator.
Ahmadinejad said that Iran’s relationship with nuclear-armed Pakistan was an example of an alliance that “is not because of nuclear bomb or weapons”.
“The foundation of our political relationship is humanitarian and is based on common cultural values,” he said.
“Promoting peace and fraternity are the common goals of the three countries and our nations. We have got hopes to a victory in future,” he said.
Addressing the media, Ahmadinejad said that all problems in the region were the result of foreign interference.
“All problems are coming from outside. In order to promote their goals and ambitions … they don’t want to allow our nations to develop,” he said, without specifically naming any foreign power.
The outspoken Iranian leader said “we should stick together in order to advance and achieve our goals”.
“All these powers are interfering in our affairs. We believe that the problems of the region must be solved regionally,” he said.
“We are here to strengthen the steps in order to solidify cooperation among the three nations. We are going to move towards removing the problems … and we should deny others the opportunity to interfere in our affairs,” he added.
Karzai also said that the dialogue held yesterday had been good and all three countries were working together.
‘Resumption of NATO supplies will benefit Afghanistan, Pakistan’
Karzai had earlier today said that the resumption of Nato supplies to the allied forces stationed in Afghanistan will benefit both Afghanistan and Pakistan, Express News had reported.
Speaking to journalists over breakfast in Islamabad, Karzai had said that Pakistan should decide on a tariff with surcharge levy for allowing Nato supplies through its routes.
The Afghan president said that Afghanistan is not looking forward to ties with India which could be detrimental for Pakistan and said that in return, he also expected from Pakistan to not engage in ties with a country which could harm Afghanistan.
He said that Pakistan should have attended the NATO sponsored Bonn Conference and that the ties between the two countries should not be inflamed because of any reason.
Speaking on holding peace talks with Taliban, Karzai said that Afghanistan will decide where the negotiations will be held. He said that the talks could be held in Turkey or Saudia Arabia rather than Qatar.
He also said that there will be no compromise made in talks with the Taliban.