Pakistan’s parliament to consider anti-terror recommendations

April 7th, 2009 - 11:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, April 7 (IANS) The National Assembly, the lower house of Pakistan’s parliament will Thursday consider a road map for implementing a 14-point anti-terrorism resolution adopted at a joint session of the legislature, it was announced here Tuesday.
The upper house, the Senate, will consider the recommendations April 17.

Speaking to reporters here Tuesday, Senator Raza Rabbani, who heads parliament’s National Security Committee (NSC), said the panel had unanimously framed the recommendations.

Parliament had, at a joint session in October 2008, adopted the 14-point anti-terrorism resolution to evolve an agreed approach to deal with the threats to the country’s security and to clamp down on rising militancy.

The resolution declared, among other things, that the drone and ground attacks by US-NATO forces in Pakistan’s tribal areas along the Afghanistan border were unacceptable.

Pakistani leaders had raised the issue Tuesday with visiting chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, and the US special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke.

However, both sides agreed to disagree on the issue and would further discuss it at the trilateral Pakistan-Afghanistan-US meeting in Washington next month.

On Monday, the NSC reiterated its condemnation of the drone attacks, terming them a threat to Pakistan’s sovereignty.

“The government would vigorously take up this issue with the visiting US special representative, in light of the parliamentary committee recommendations,” Rabbani told reporters after a meeting of the committee.

“Let everybody be sure that parliament is supreme and the committee of parliament is making it categorically clear that the drone attacks are unacceptable,” he added.

Responding to a question on the delay in finalising the NSC recommendations, Rabbani said: “We are facing multi-dimensional issues and have to keep in view the local, regional and international obligations.”

“A number of state and non-state actors are involved in this problem and it’s necessary to take up all the dimensions before reaching a final conclusion and prepare workable recommendations,” the senator added.

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