ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has lodged a strong protest with the United States over its drone missile attacks inside Pakistatni territory terming them violation of the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity. “U.S. Ambassador Anne W. Patterson was called to the Foreign Office and the Foreign Secretary lodged a strong protest on the two missiles fired by the...
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has lodged a strong protest with the
United States over its drone missile attacks inside Pakistatni territory terming them violation of the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity.
“U.S. Ambassador Anne W. Patterson was called to the Foreign Office and the Foreign Secretary lodged a strong protest on the two missiles fired by the US drone on a residential compound in Bannu yesterday,” said Foreign Office spokesman Muhammad Sadiq at his weekly briefing Thursday.
Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir conveyed Pakistan's strong
condemnation to the U.S. ambassador on the missile attack and loss of life and property caused by it.
The spokesman said the Foreign Secretary emphasised that continued drone attacks undermined public support for government's counter-terrorism efforts and stressed that these attacks must be stopped.
The spokesman said the Ambassador assured that Pakistan's concern and position would be conveyed to the US government.
Replying to a question, the spokesman said there was no understanding
like “Don't ask, don't tell” between Pakistan and the United States about drone attacks.
The spokesman said he agreed that violation of sovereignty is
violation of international law.
He said British Foreign Secretary David Miliband would visit Pakistan on Wednesday next for exchange of views with Pakistani leadership on the regional situation, particularly developments in Afghanistan and the common fight against terrorism and extremism.
The spokesman said Miliband is expected to call on President Zardari, Prime Minister Gilani and hold indepth discussions with Foreign Minister Makhmood Shah Mahmood Qureshi. He will also call on Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani besides meeting other high officials.
He said the two sides will also review progress with regard to the Friends of Democratic Pakistan Forum.
Replying to a question about Dr. Afia's case, the spokesman said in view of the forensic report and comments of the Court about her health conditions, it is all the more important that she should be repatriated to
The spokesman said her return to Pakistan will greatly facilitate her speedy rehabilitation.
He said defence counsel of Dr. Afia has told Pakistan's Embassy in Washington that the forensic evaluation report will be shared with the Embassy after permission of the Court.
Replying to a question, the spokesman said Pakistan and the UN are very close to a final announcement about probe into assassination of Benazir Bhutto.
He said Pakistan is interested in the probe through UN as it will bring credibility to the findings.
The spokesman said following arrest of a serving Indian Army Colonel in the bombing of Samjhota Express Train, Pakistan would urge New Delhi to share information with Islamabad.
About ongoing elections in Occupied Kashmir, he said these cannot be construed as authentic expression of the real aspiration of Kashmiri people.
He said Pakistan has also upheld the inalienable right of the Kashmir people realise their legitimate aspirations in accordance with relevant U.N. resolutions.
The spokesman said Pakistan has always underscored the need for
associating the true representation of the Kashmiri people with the
Pakistan-India process on Jammu and Kashmir.
He also pointed out that elections in Occupied Kashmir have been
boycotted by the APHC. The top APHC leadership has been either arrested or detained, he added.
Replying to a question, he said certain logistic issues have slowed down the intra-Kashmir trade. He said the two sides are working to overcome these issues which are dampening commercial exchanges.
The spokesman said both Pakistan and Iran are committed to
Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project and currently discussing
He said there is an invitation to President Asif Ali Zardari to visit Iran but no dates have yet been finalised.
Replying to another question, the spokesman said Pakistan was
satisfied with the outcome of the official level meeting of Friends of Pakistan held in Abu Dhabi.
He said a number of projects for cooperation were discussed and
Pakistan received very good and positive response from the Friends.
The spokesman confirmed that Bangladesh has requested postponement of
SAARC Interior Ministers meeting which was scheduled to take place from
Monday next on account of Parliamentary elections in Bangladesh.
The meeting has been rescheduled for the first quarter of next year, he added.