US, NATO troops will not be allowed to operate inside Pakistan: Qureshi

April 6th, 2009 - 1:58 pm ICT by ANI  

Barack Obama Multan, Apr 6 (ANI): Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said no foreign military would be allowed to set foot in the country and law enforcement agencies will conduct anti-terrorism operations inside the country.

Qureshi told reporters here that during his recent visit to Washington, he had conveyed to the US that NATO would not be allowed to conduct operations in Pakistan. They have understood our point of view and accepted it, he added.

He said that the US has introduced a bill worth 10.5 billion dollars for Pakistan, which comprises 7.5 billion dollars as economic assistance and 3 billion dollars for military assistance.

Qureshi hoped more assistance would be forthcoming in the wake of the Friend of Democratic Pakistan meeting scheduled for April 17 in Tokyo.

Referring to US President Barack Obama’s statement on “no blank cheques”, he said Pakistan would neither give any blank cheque, nor would it accept any.

“We are a sovereign country and a nation with self-esteem,” he said, adding that while the US is a military and economic power, Islamabad wants to negotiate with them on the basis of equality as an ally,” the Daily Times quoted Qureshi, as saying.

The Foreign Minister said defeat in the war on terror was not an option for Pakistan. He said the terrorists were challenging the writ of government and wanted to impose their own system.

Qureshi also urged the world to accept Pakistan’s status as a nuclear power and recognise it as had been done with India.

“We are a responsible nuclear power and it will be appropriate that the world should recognise it,” he added. (ANI)

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