Islamabad: Pakistan will not allow its dignity to be compromised, said Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar amid heightened tension between the Washington and Islamabad. The US-Pakistan ties became strained over an accusation that Pakistan’s spy agency was helping the Haqqani network.
Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar in an interview aired Wednesday reiterated Islamabad’s strong exception to Admiral Mike Mullen’s assertions of Pakistani complicity with Afghan insurgents and stressed there are no unilateral solutions. “We have strong reservations against a statement of this type, which was made by a person who is representing a country with which we have had many (counterterrorism) successes,” she told National Public Radio. Khar was in the US to attend the UN General Assembly.
She called for understanding that the “dignity of any sovereign state must be respected. You don’t want to give Pakistanis the message that their lives are any less important than yours. That is a wrong message to give”.
In addition to human sacrifices, the war against terrorists has cost $68 billion to Pakistan, reported Associated Press of Pakistan from Washington. “Most of the money that comes is reimbursement for money that Pakistan has already spent. Let’s not look at it as an aid syndrome or a relationship that is determined by how much who is giving each other,” she said.
Pakistan would be better off with a safe neighbourhood, she stressed, reaffirming Islamabad’s commitment to a peaceful region.
Khar noted that her country and the US “need each other” and “are fighting against the same people” but emphasised that “Pakistan’s dignity must not be compromised”.
When asked why Pakistan had reacted so strongly to Mullen’s comments, Khar said 30,000 Pakistanis have died due to the war against terror. “Imagine, how the US would react? We have 6,000-some soldiers who have died in the battle,” she was quoted as saying.
“Imagine how the US would react if such a number had lost their lives and then comments would come from other countries, which said that you are the problem, you are part of the problem.”