Pakistan wants to move beyond Salala incident: Khar

Published: May 14, 2012
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Foreign minister says Pakistan wants to play a role of a facilitator as far as Afghanistan is concerned. PHOTO: INP

Foreign minister says Pakistan wants to play a role of a facilitator as far as Afghanistan is concerned. PHOTO: INP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan wants to move beyond the Salala incident and improve ties with the US, said Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar on Monday.

“We want to play a role of a facilitator as far as peace and stability in Afghanistan is concerned,” she said, adding that Pakistan has never charged its War on Terror allies for using its land routes to run supplies.

Speaking at a press briefing in Islamabad, Khar said that the talks with the US are heading in a positive direction.

“Both, Pakistan and Nato want peace in the region,” she stated.

The foreign minister said the government had sought an unconditional apology from the US, over the Salala checkpost incident in which 24 Pakistani soldiers had been killed,  as had been demanded by the Parliament in a policy review, and that this subject has been taken up with US authorities at all levels.

Pakistan is expected to take a final decision about Nato supply route next week when the Defence Committee of the Cabinet meets to discuss the issue.

The decision would also pave the way for Pakistan’s participation in the Chicago summit which would discuss the Afghan endgame. Diplomats on both sides have been keen to resolve the impasse between Islamabad and Washington before the summit on May 21-22.

It is also to be noted that in late April, the US special envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, Marc Grossman also visited Islamabad and held discussions with the top government and military echelon.

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Reader Comments (56)

  • Ashraf P
    May 14, 2012 - 7:14PM

    Pakistan is in a real fix now. After hinging the entire foreign policy on the single Salala incident, it is finding it hard to find a way out. The Americans are not playing ball because they know Pakistan’s economy is crumbling and without the aid money it might well collapse. This is what happens when you let the media dictate foreign policy.

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  • True Muslim Paki
    May 14, 2012 - 7:26PM

    We should remove words like Ghairat, Imaan from our books all over Pakistan! IK & hafeezsaeed must declare an alliance & start protests of any means. The time is ripe for a announcing alliance since both PTI, DPC (JuD) have the same objectives. This will also help since all political parties (PPP, PML (N), MQM have armed groups & JuD can provide that support!

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  • V Sharma
    May 14, 2012 - 7:29PM

    “Pakistan wants to move beyond Salala incident: Khar”. Well they dont have no other options, do they. Their bluff has been called. They WILL open the G-LOCs.

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:29PM

    Dear Mis khar NATO deosnt want peace in the region if they wanted they wouldn’t have invaded Afghanistan now their backs have been beaten by Taliban and they are yelling at Pakistan. khar should speak what the nation wants her to speak, We must not resume the supplies at any cost

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:31PM

    NATO and USA has made the world more unsafe, Stop waging wars for ur wicked agendas named as strategic interests peace will prevail, Supplies should not be resumed and NATo should pack their bags

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:35PM

    khar is just enjoying government for last 8 years and she still doesn’t know whats happening and what a balanced foreign policy should be, Whole nation will be embarrassed over allowing NATO transit but she wont be

    Now enemy is at the gates and they r still fighting over popcorns, u people cant do anything just back ur bags and fly to Miami.Recommend

  • May 14, 2012 - 7:37PM

    we will regret in future if we resume their supplies nation must stand against these corrupts, looters and thugs who are sitting in their air conditioned rooms playing with emotions of the people,

    Get out of this unnatural alliance for god sake

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:40PM

    We salute the courage of Afghan freedom fighters who have been fighting to liberate their land from invaders and savages, This is such a shameless act that we are gonna provide NATO a life line for killing the Afghan Muslims, what a shame

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:43PM

    @True Muslim Paki:
    armed groups? are u insane

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  • SAS
    May 14, 2012 - 7:48PM

    Want to move on or want to forget??????

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  • Khan
    May 14, 2012 - 7:53PM

    @Pakistan politics:
    Who are we to ask them to pack their bags? You should really consider changing your name to Afghanistan politics as people who put interest of other countries above the interest and future of Pakistan should not use this country’s name ever.
    Afghanistan has its own government run by their own people and we should refrain from poking our nose in their affairs before some one cut it in to pieces.

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  • Hadi Ansari
    May 14, 2012 - 7:55PM

    Twenty four humans lost their lives which is extremely sad and victims relatives have the sympathy of all of us but the demand of unconditional apology from US will not bring back to life those brave soldiers.The option which has precedence is monetary compensation to the bereaved families.
    It is heartening to know from the lady foreign minister that all parties to current stand off have decided to resolve the issues in days.

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  • apj
    May 14, 2012 - 7:55PM

    Our ghairat is a pretty lazy thing: took years to wake up and is going back to sleep within 6 months or so.

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  • May 14, 2012 - 7:58PM

    @Khan:
    we have been badly affected by taking part in afghan war, Pakistan can make them to pack their bags early, US is threatening Pakistan that it would not be invited to a conference to decide the future of Afghanistan and PPP is just trying to fool the nation that it would be bad for Pakistan for not being part of it, but there is nothing that US can do in Afghanistan without the support of Pakistan they can not blackmail us if we take a strong stand all regional powers support Pakistan’s role in Afghan war.

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  • Ah
    May 14, 2012 - 7:58PM

    Pakistans economy does not depend on aid money because the gilanis are siphoning

    So frankly there is no card

    The leaders stopped representing the country after SC

    The Pakistani people are opposed to supply routes, and this illegitimate government should try to open them

    The supply line will not be opened

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  • gp65
    May 14, 2012 - 8:01PM

    @True Muslim Paki: “This will also help since all political parties (PPP, PML (N), MQM have armed groups & JuD can provide that support!”

    I thought JuD was a charitable organization and had nothing to do with LeT which was a jihadi organization. So how come JuD can provide armed support? See the contradiction between various claims and statements?

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  • May 14, 2012 - 8:02PM

    @Ah:
    We can survive without aid but cant with getting blood of innocents on our hands

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  • Shahzore Farid
    May 14, 2012 - 8:04PM

    The Americans can not tolerate their loss in Afghanistan.The Americans could not fight the Taliban alone and sought help from NATO but even still they are unsuccessful.Now when everyone is questioning them, they are blaming Pakistan for their mistakes which they made almost 10 years ago.Recommend

  • Babloo
    May 14, 2012 - 8:08PM

    Looks like Pakistan is ‘desperate’ to open NATO routes. What an irony.

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  • someone
    May 14, 2012 - 8:14PM

    Pakistan better not open nato supply routes. They are the enemy of Islam and muslims. The US army’s leaked course on planning a total war on islam, wiping out entire muslim population and using nuclear missiles/bombs on holy cities Makkah and Madina like the hiroshima attack were revealed.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-18030105
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/pentagon-instructor-urged-total-war-with-islam-7737807.html
    even after this leak, if khar opens the supply routes then that openly means this govt is an ally of the enemies of Islam.
    Its time muslims started an islamic caliphate in each and every muslim country, made an islamic countries trade bloc and made a United Islamic Army to protect ourselves and our holy cities.

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  • Mo!
    May 14, 2012 - 8:28PM

    Why am I not suprised. Now that America is threatning Pak with sanctions,they have no choice but to move beyond the salala incident. If there is a cut in aid to pak, how would these politicians fill their pockets and lead their usual ‘SHAHAANA’ lifestyle.

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  • Singh
    May 14, 2012 - 8:44PM

    @Pakistan politics:
    all regional powers support Pakistan’s role in Afghan war.
    Can you name one?

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  • Ahmad
    May 14, 2012 - 8:52PM

    @someone:

    That wasn’t a policy planning leak. That was an officer that attempted to teach hate for Islam under the umbrella that he was teaching about Islam. His class was shut down immediately upon being discovered and he is now under administrative review. Please don’t spread lies and spread hate. Calling that a policy leak. Have some shame.

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  • Lala Gee
    May 14, 2012 - 8:57PM

    In my opinion demanding an apology was a total waste of emotional capital in the first place as empty words do not matter in the end. It is always a dangerous game to make the powerful embarrassed, no matter how right you are, even in ordinary life especially when the sole objective is to satisfy the egos of some and in the process hurt the bigger egos. Our policy makers should have known and dealt with the situation professionally but miserably failed to recognize the repercussions. As it was very obvious that the Salala incidence was a deliberate and well thought of plan, they just confined themselves to rhetoric and did not take any a planed course of actions. In my opinion, it should have been like this:

    a. Conduct a full inquiry ASAP and make public its findings
    b. Demand an apology with full punitive compensation
    c. After reasonable time, threaten to close the GLOC
    d. Again after reasonable time, threaten to close the Air routes
    e. Take the matter to the UN Security Council or International Court of Justice

    And in the meantime enhance your diplomatic efforts to sort out the issues. But the thing is why on earth this could have happened in Pakistan. When our rulers, seek help and support of USA to remain in power, US knows how to make them bend on their knees.Recommend

  • May 14, 2012 - 9:18PM

    : We totally agree with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister’s statement that “we need to move beyond Salala”. Salala was a mistake due to the actions of both sides and we have regretted the loss of lives in that incident. Much has happened in the last few months and most advantages have been taken by the terrorists. We have seen an increase of their activities inside Pakistan. They got a chance to regroup and attack innocent people; they targeted security personnel and even attacked a jail to free condemned terrorists. It is high time that we get together and free the region from these terrorists. Opening the NATO routes is one step in the right direction. NATO is winding down its operation in Afghanistan. . We would like to see a peaceful and prospering Afghanistan which will not only be in the interest of Pakistan, but the whole world that has been affected by terrorism.

    Maj David Nevers
    DET-United States Central Command
    http://www.centcom.mil/urRecommend

  • Azim
    May 14, 2012 - 9:30PM

    Its amusing to see PM and FM taking a U-turn on a policy decision. Surely this is happening with consent of Pak Army. never sure of what to do and how to handle foreign affairs and protect national interest. Interesting to see that Pak Army has changed it views as well which also is a sign of desperation from their part as they face financial crunch.

    US lead funding support will help Govt. to over come power crisis given the high circular debt – important for Govt. not because it care for people but because it want this to be a win for it ahead of elections.

    There is only one looser to all this, and that are the people of Pakistan. With Salah they have not just lost many soldiers but with the routes opening without an apology we stand to loose our self-respect and dignity.

    May God help us have mercy on our souls.

    Pakistan Zindabad ;(Recommend

  • logic wins
    May 14, 2012 - 10:12PM

    @someone:
    Its time muslims started an islamic caliphate in each and every muslim country, made an islamic countries trade bloc

    will the saudis and other gulf sheikhdoms declare that their oil wealth belongs to all muslims and distribute the wealth to poor countries like Pakistan?

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  • Concerned
    May 14, 2012 - 10:21PM

    GOP continued the Salala incident stalemate far too long than international norms permit. The Pak FM statement is a positive move and war against terror must continue with full vigour.

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  • goof
    May 14, 2012 - 10:22PM

    What was the sudden breakthrough?

    As far as I am aware:

    There has been no apology.

    We are not taxing the NATO supplies.

    They have not ceased to assassinate Pakistani citizens (perceived threats) by drones.

    They have pinned a bounty on one of our citizens without due process (Hafiz Saeed)

    So once again, what was the sudden breakthrough?

    Just as the pressure to draw the war to a close was increasing. i.e France withdrawal, ANA 75% control.

    Why would we commit suicide by supplying NATO? Recommend

  • jock
    May 14, 2012 - 10:43PM

    @V Sharma:
    It seeems you love your comment a lot…what you’ve been seeing for quite some time in terms of NATO-blockage is in fact the other option chosen by Pakistan. Pakistan, despite Khar’s rantings, will not open supply routes without an unequivocal apology. This you and all your ‘likes’ will see.

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  • let there be peace
    May 14, 2012 - 10:50PM

    It seems orders have come from ‘higher up’ to announce surrender. When it comes to announce and take blame for such things, let the civil government take all the blame!

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  • Its (still) Econonmy Stupid
    May 14, 2012 - 11:00PM

    In exchange for seat at the Chicago Conference table Madam FM what do you bring to the table? This is how the global community sees Pakistan:
    Credibility for honest facilitator: Do not have it
    Control over the Non State Actor (Haqqani) in Afghanistan: Do not have it
    Control over Hafeez Saeed etc.: Do not have it
    Control over the border with Afghanistan: Do not have it
    Money for development in Afghanistan: Do not have it
    Respect for the sovereignty of Afghanistan: Do not have it
    Willing to give up strategic depth in Afghanistan: No
    Apology to US for blocking NATO: Not sure yet
    Decision to open NATO supply route under the threat of Terrorism accountability bill: Most likely

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  • Hasan
    May 14, 2012 - 11:00PM

    Egypt had their revolution

    The people of Pakistan will not allow the supply lines to be reopened. Recommend

  • True Fact
    May 14, 2012 - 11:17PM

    When benefit is the criteria for all decisions…..people and nations will behave like animals, however if Halal and Haram is the criteria, people and nations will achieve self-respect, dignity and honour in this world and the hereafter. None of the these politicians use Halal and Haram as their criteria. May Allah SWT relieve us of these puppets and grant us a sincere leader. Ameen.Recommend

  • farigh neighbors all around
    May 14, 2012 - 11:49PM

    Correct statement is:
    “The Government wants to move beyond Salala incident: Khar”
    This clarification is for trolls who are overly concerned with Pakistani news and then they wonder…………………………..

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  • Pungi
    May 15, 2012 - 12:18AM

    See Pakistanis Our Blood is so cheap..!
    India can’t forget Mumbai attacks…U.S can’t forget 9/11…but Pakistan want to move beyond Salala incident..ALAS!!Recommend

  • Ali
    May 15, 2012 - 12:20AM

    How much did the US pay to buy her this time?

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  • Hunzai
    May 15, 2012 - 12:24AM

    Old Habits Die Hard… :)

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  • gp65
    May 15, 2012 - 12:32AM

    @jock: “Pakistan, despite Khar’s rantings, will not open supply routes without an unequivocal apology. This you and all your ‘likes’ will see.”

    We won’t have to wait too long. The meetings are on May 15 and 16. We will see what happens then. Most of the world knows that Pakistan will get a little more money and nothing else – no apology, no stoppage of drones and supply routes will be reopened. You and many more like you were used by your establishment as a negotiating tool for your army. SO now that the army has decided it is not going to get anything more by getting you all in the street, t has asked the civilians to do an about turn.

    You will see that JuD/DPC which are an extension of the ISI will only make token protests. Same thing with Imran.

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  • Meekal Ahmed
    May 15, 2012 - 12:36AM

    @Ashraf P:

    No this is what happens when your foreign policy is dictated by the military.

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  • Meekal Ahmed
    May 15, 2012 - 12:38AM

    @Pakistan politics:

    and what about the Muslims that “freedom fighters” kill? They just beheaded 20 of them and stuck two heads on a pole.

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  • Meekal Ahmed
    May 15, 2012 - 12:42AM

    @logic wins:

    it is people like you and the views you hold that scare “ordinary” Pakistani’s.

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  • Qaiser Farooq
    May 15, 2012 - 12:43AM

    Well the clash of nerves have come to an end..we blocked supply for more than 3 months waiting USA to apologise and assure not to violate the territorial sovereignty of Pakistan..resolutions were passed in Parliament..Recommendations for charting out the planks of establishing new relationship with USA etc etc..All has come to an end..Neither USA apologised for the massacre of 24 pakistani soldiers nor drone attacks stopped violating the ” territorial integrity ” of Pakistan..what to say or do..we have to submit to US pressure to support our crumbling economy and to save us from being isolated globally and to have some face-saving so that Pakistan becomes a stakeholder in Afghan crisis..every time the sentiments of our nation are humiliated, why the heck did you block US supplyline at the first place when you knew that this decision couldn’t be sustained for a longer period..Leaders build the nations whether they are dictators or democracy loving lot..Mao, Stalin,Hitler,F.D.Roosevelt, Quaid e Azam, Mahatma Gandhi, Mahatir Mohammad, Fidel Castro, Saddam Hussain etc..the lot of the leaders we have indicates that Pakistan is in search of true leadership..Woh bahadur tha magar haray huay lashkar main tha.( He was valiant but belonged to a vanquished army).

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  • Qaiser Farooq
    May 15, 2012 - 12:47AM

    By making this decision atleast the rumour mills will stop churning for a while..All eyes are set on Chicago Conference..I would suggest pakistani leadership and military establishment to reach a decision where both agree to sign blank sheets and give them to USA allowing the latter to write whatever agreement they want regarding the future of Afghanistan..Because,in the long run, We will have to sign the printed version without any ammendment.

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  • MyHeartSpeaks
    May 15, 2012 - 12:50AM

    Khar you should have courage to say this before relatives and loved ones of Salala Shaheeds.

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  • hawk
    May 15, 2012 - 1:42AM

    its better to strengthen our economic backbone. country like us desperately needs powerful and honest leader. otherwise these incidences about to come in future more frequently

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  • Arindom
    May 15, 2012 - 1:56AM

    all the establishment’s bluffs are being called one after another – does anybody feel any embarrasment?

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  • ASIM
    May 15, 2012 - 2:06AM

    The lady became minister at the age of 25….she has learnt politics a lot since then

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  • sohail hussain
    May 15, 2012 - 2:33AM

    If jud doesnt do anything about this i will considef them fake muslims just trying to gain support in the name of islam.

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  • Khattak
    May 15, 2012 - 4:44AM

    @Qaiser Farooq, ..”Because,in the long run, We will have to sign the printed version without any ammendment”

    Is Afghanistan your colony? Do you have the means to do so? Can you settle down Baluchistan, Sindudesh, Pashtonistan, Karchi problems. Of course you can sponser few mollas to terrorise innocent afghans or Indians or blast schools, hotels or bridges in Afghanistan & India but nothing more. Thats why the World community is isolating Pakistan until it learn not to use terror for foreign policy achievements. If you are still not sure, Mollas hate you much as Indian. Few bandits of Haqanis is what you got but be careful with them as well, if you can buy them with your meagre resources, why cant others. Take it easy & just relax within your means. The game is over, no more terrorists sponsership is what the world want to see, nothing more or less.

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  • Zeta
    May 15, 2012 - 9:35AM

    @Singh:
    China is the power being mentioned. If you think india is the power, stop being delusional

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  • Sexton Blake
    May 15, 2012 - 11:49PM

    @Its (still) Econonmy Stupid: Major Nevis-CENTCOM
    Quite good, but there is an alternative viewpoint.

    This is how many countries see America:

    Are you honest? Pretending to be but, not really. Is your President trustworthy? Pretends to be, but not really. Do you have a real democracy that works? We pretend that we have, but not really. Do the President’s decisions reflect the peoples wishes? Well, not really. Do American Senate decisions reflect the peoples wishes? Well, not really. Do American Congress decisions reflect the peoples wishes? Well, not really. Do you have control over the Pakistan/Afghanistan border? Well, not really. Do you have enough money to solve the Afghan problems? Well we will print it I suppose. After destroying Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, Syria are you repentant? Well, not really. After installing puppet governments into Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya do you respect them? Not really. Have you thought up a good excuse for getting out of Afghanistan? Working on it. Have you got the Taliban under control after eleven years? Well, not really. Will you apologize for killing 24 Pakistan troops, which was a U.S./NATO mistake? Probably not. Will you apologize for killing thousands of innocent Pakistani citizens? No way. Will you now stop killing innocent Pakistanis with so called collateral damage? Its never worried us before. Will you stop bullying the Pakistan Government? We cannot help ourselves. Its the way America operates. If the NATO supply route is opened will you pay a fair price for using Pakistan resources? Probably not, but will give a little financial aid, and then
    The above are just a few of the issues which require urgent attention from the U.S. Government, but solving them would be an excellent start in putting Pakistan/U.S. relations back on track, and may help you on your diplomatic missions.

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  • Dr Ahmad Rashid Malik
    May 17, 2012 - 5:05PM

    After a hiatus of nearly six months, Pakistan civilian Government and military junta agreed to reopen the NATO supply line with out US official apology to be offered to Pakistan and the termination of the drone attacks on Pakistan’s territory. The reasons that were forwarded by the Government appear flimsy and the United States and NATO accepted no fundamental demand put forward by Pakistan for the resumption of the logistics through Pakistan. It looks that Pakistan has achieved nothing in the past six months than merely working on even much lower salary than before. As a matter of fact, Pakistan would attend the NATO Chicago Summit to be started on 20 May in the United States. When Pakistan boycotted the Bonn Summit in protest of its soldiers’ killings on 26 November last, the attendance of the Chicago Summit would likely to yield no outcome to promote its interests against war on terror.

    One should not overlook and undermine or underplay the implications for the reopening of the NATO supply line. However, one thing could be certain: that is public anguish and deteriorating law and order and security situation in the country at least up to the framing of the next elected Government early next year. The threat from militants is looming large. The support from a number of parliamentary and out of parliamentary political parties and interest groups would try to hijack the situation to seek the sympathies of their constituencies during the up-coming ballot. Dr Ahmad Rashid Malik – Islamabad

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  • May 17, 2012 - 5:09PM

    @Pakistan politics: Very wise advice. Sure you are the only true well wisher who will finally bring peace and prosperity to Pakistan.

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  • May 17, 2012 - 5:22PM

    @Shahzore Farid: Why do we spend all the time to analyse the American difficulties and their failures etc. Our concern should be the interest of Pakistan and resolving our own problems.

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  • Sexton Blake
    May 17, 2012 - 6:56PM

    It is important to analyze American difficulties because for the last twenty years or so America has ensured that their problems become Pakistan problems. and then senior American politicians, and lessor ones, have the gall to constantly criticize the Pakistan Government for not solving those problems America has created. On top of this it is interesting to note how many comments, supporting America, are written by people with names which could only come from South Asia. .

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