‘Good things’ come in small packages | Pakistan Today

‘Good things’ come in small packages

Pakistan and the United States are trying to agree on a “package deal” covering the reopening of NATO supplies, future of drone attacks, US assistance to Islamabad and host of other important issues, a daunting task that is causing a delay in the restoration of supplies to the international forces deployed in Afghanistan through Pakistani soil.
It is not only the NATO supplies that is being discussed only through diplomatic channels as well as informal negotiations between Islamabad and Washington, rather both countries are working on a “package deal” to resolve their most of conflicting matters, if not all of them.
They then aim to move forward towards the objective of common goal, the restoration of peace in Afghanistan, which would pave the way for the withdrawal of bulk of foreign troops from there by 2014.
“Yes it’s a ‘package deal’ that we are working upon but it a difficult task and that is why the delay is being witnessed in the reopening of NATO supplies, which itself is a very complicated matter and depends on host of factors such as a public apology by US for air assault on Pakistani border posts last year and killing of several of our soldiers,” said a senior government official on Friday, seeking anonymity.
Defence Minister Naveed Qamar also reiterated Pakistan’ stance over the demand for an apology by the US over the Salala incident, in which 24 Pakistani soldiers were killed. He said Pakistan continued to stick to its demand for a public US apology and all decisions on important matters, including NATO supplies, would be made in accordance with national interests.
“There will be no compromise on national sovereignty,” he said.
The senior official said that apart from apology there were other matters as well, as such as the US’ willingness to reimburse the dues of Coalition Support Fund (CSF) worth billions of dollars to Islamabad, which needed to be resolved before the reopening of NATO supplies. “Then there is the carpeting of Pakistani roads and highways damaged by heavy traffic of NATO vehicles and of course we have the issue of future taxation over these containers at hand,” he said.
However, without elaborating, the official said there had been some progress on the issue of NATO supplies and it was hoped that the matter would be sorted out in some days.
He said the two sides were working on drone strikes issue as well and trying to settle the problem to the mutual satisfaction of one another. “In the past, there could have been some intelligence sharing s for taking out the ‘high value targets’ in the Tribal Areas, but now there is so much public opposition to the drone attacks that Pakistan wants to sort that matter as soon as possible and that too in a way that is acceptable to the common people here,” he said.
Pakistan, he said also wanted assurance from the US there would be unhindered supply of assistance to Islamabad and Washington should be mindful of all the grave economic problems that its major allied nation in the counter-terrorism campaign was facing. He said Pakistan’s role in the efforts to resolve the Afghanistan issue and the ongoing reconciliation process for the purpose was another important matter that Islamabad was currently discussing under the ‘package deal’ with Washington. Another senior official privy to ongoing talks also hinted at considerable progress on the NATO supply restoration, but admitted at the same time that the US refusal to tender an apology was hindering a complete breakthrough.
“We are asking them for an apology which they should do and if this demand is accepted then the breakthrough on NATO supply routes reopening could be achieved. Though there is unanimity of views that NATO supplies shall be restored but the US would have to tender an apology,” he said, wishing not to be named.



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4 Comments

  1. Daddy said:

    Size doesn't matter, techinique does 🙂 Just ask Hina Khar.

  2. aryanazlam said:

    Saaf chuptat bhi nahin samany aatay bhi nahin. Americans are mindful of our financial constraints.
    They r testing our nerves.

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