WASHINGTON: Responding to the US Congressional hearing on Balochistan, the Foreign Office on Thursday stated that it had conveyed its concerns to the United States and had been ensured that the US government had nothing to do with the briefing.
The Foreign Office – referring to the statement of the US State Department – said that it clearly pointed out that the US government had nothing to do with this briefing.
“We have conveyed our concerns and raised this issue with the US authorities both in Washington and Islamabad. The matter was clarified by the US State Department yesterday,” said the Foreign Office.
“We believe that Washington fully understands our position on this issue.”
Meanwhile, State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland, when questioned about the discussion on Balochistan, replied that their view on Balochistan remains unchanged.
“Congress holds hearings on many foreign affairs topics,” stated Nuland.
“These hearings don’t necessarily imply that the US government endorses one view or another. I’d underscore that the State Department is not participating or involved in this hearing today.”
The spokesperson was referring to the comments she had made earlier on Twitter regarding Balochistan. “We emphasise that the US engages with Pakistan on a whole range of issues, including ways to foster economic development and expanding opportunity in Balochistan.”
When asked if the US supported the demand for an independent Balochistan, Nuland said, “You know where we’ve been on Balochistan. We encourage all the parties in Balochistan to work out their differences peacefully and through a valid political process.”
Published in The Express Tribune, February 10th, 2012.