Pakistani Islamic groups oppose NATO supply lines’ reopening

July 5th, 2012 - 5:33 am ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, July 4 (IANS) Leaders of Islamic parties in Pakistan Wednesday opposed Islamabad’s decision to reopen supply routes for NATO forces to Afghanistan.

The US had to suspend drone attacks after a NATO drone strike killed 24 Pakistani soldiers in Mohmand Agency Nov 26, 2011. A furious Islamabad barred the passage of NATO supplies through the country.

On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she offered her “deepest regrets” to Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar for the “tragic incidents”.

This paved the way for Pakistan to reopen the NATO supply routes to Afghanistan.

On Wednesday, Pakistan’s Islamic groups angrily reacted to the government’s decision, saying they will hold demonstrations against the reopening of the NATO supply line.

The Defence of Pakistan Council (DPC), an alliance of nearly 40 religious-political groups, said a protest plan would be chalked out against the government’s step over NATO supplies.

A prominent leader of the alliance, Fazal-ur-Rehman Khalil, termed the government’s decision as unjustified, saying that the decision was against the wishes of the majority people in Pakistan.

Khalil said that it was also regrettable that the government withdrew its earlier demand for tax on NATO trucks and also asked the government to explain the conditions on which the NATO supply line had been reopened.

Pakistan said Wednesday that it has given passage to the international forces.

Information Minister Qamar-uz-Zaman Kaira said the decision would help restore peace and stability in the neighboring country as well as in Pakistan.

Pakistani federal cabinet unanimously endorsed the decision about reopening of NATO supply routes Wednesday.

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf informed the cabinet that the process of re-engagement with the US and NATO had been completed as per national interests and honour of the country and parliamentary guidelines.

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