Pakistan caught between the devil and the deep sea: Kasuri

November 14th, 2007 - 2:26 am ICT by admin  
Kasuri said that Pakistan could neither detach itself from the international community, which wanted continuation of the military offensive in the tribal areas, nor could it annoy its citizens by killing their fellow countrymen irrationally.

“No Pakistani is happy over what is happening in Waziristan, but we are not doing this (military operation) solely on the US pressure. There are 37 countries in Afghanistan at the moment, and if we call back our army, these 37 countries will not remain silent,” he told reporters here.

Kasuri said that when the 22 South Koreans were kidnapped in Afghanistan a few months back, Korean Foreign Minister Song Min Soon called him up to get assurance that these hostages would not be shifted to Pakistani tribal areas.

“So everybody, the entire international community, is concerned about what is happening in our border areas with Afghanistan. We are in a very difficult position,” The News quoted Kasuri, as saying.

“Either we get ourselves detached from the international community and face isolation and put Pakistanis living in foreign countries in serious trouble or, take action against miscreants, who are also our enemies,” Kasuri added.

He said Pakistan couldn’t afford going against the “aspirations” of the international community although it had an agreement (with militants) that they would not shelter foreigners despite criticism from the international community.

“We took a stand and refused to bow to the mounting world pressure. But, when these people kidnapped Chinese, attacked their own countrymen in buses and restaurants, then we were compelled to take the unpleasant step,” Kasuri said.

Military action was not the only solution to the problem, he said, adding that the government is paying attention to the economic and social development of tribal areas. (ANI)

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