Sabtu, 14 April 2012

News and views regarding the situation between the US and Pakistan , Drones , the Nato Supply routes ......

The drones must go on: US won’t stop CIA strikes in Pakistan

Published: 13 April, 2012, 21:52
Edited: 14 April, 2012, 04:40
Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)

Washington "has no intentions" to end CIA drone strikes against militant targets in Pakistan, American media report citing unnamed US officials. The news comes hours after a Pakistani resolution called on the US to end its attacks.
Officials noted that they would work in the near future to try and mend ties with Pakistan, but if suspected terrorist targets are detected by the CIA drone’s hellfire missiles lasers, they will shoot. There have been no official comments from the White House so far, and the officials providing the news commented only anonymously. 
This comes right after Pakistan’s parliament, following more than two weeks of deliberation, unanimously approved a four-page resolution on Thursday with the support of opposition parties.
The resolution calls on the US to end CIA drone attacks immediately, and demands that the Obama administration apologize for the November airstrikes that left 24 Pakistani soldiers dead. There have been reports of the White House considering to make an official apology over the Salala checkpost attack.
This is not the first official Pakistani demand that Washington end the strikes – demands the White House has a habit of ignoring. That fact cast doubts that the US is likely to change its policy now, especially as Washington believes the strikes are key to defeating al-Qaeda.
As for the issue of NATO supply routes, which lay through Pakistan, the resolution demands that no arms and ammunition be transported through the country. Pakistan also wants more payments from NATO and the US for the right to ship supplies across its soil. 
If these conditions are met by the US, Afghanistan may get the food and fuel supplies it so badly needs since November, when delivery was suspended after the air strike that killed the Pakistani soldiers. 
About 30 per cent of the supplies used by NATO and US troops in Afghanistan are transported through Pakistan. For the US, the route through Pakistan allows significant savings on shipments. The Pentagon says it costs about $17,000 per container to go through the "north" – that being through Central Asia – compared with about $7,000 per container to go through Pakistan.
Among other measures, the resolution also prohibits covert operations inside Pakistan, and says that no private security contractors or intelligence operatives are to be allowed into the country.
It also calls for  and end to unauthorized American military ingress onto Pakistani soil, even for “hot pursuit.”
The resolution is essentially nonbinding, but Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said that his government will ensure that its conditions are fully implemented.
“The resolution will enrich your [parliament members] respect and dignity; I assure you that we will get these enforced in letter and spirit,” Gilani said. “We are a responsible nation,” he said. “We know our obligations as well as the importance of the United States.” 

Washington’s response: treating the resolution with ‘respect’

The US State Department met the Pakistani parliament's decision with respect. 
"We respect the seriousness with which parliament's review of US-Pakistan relations has been conducted," said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland. "We seek a relationship with Pakistan that is enduring, strategic, and more clearly defined. We look forward to discussing these policy recommendations with the Government of Pakistan and continuing to engage with it on our shared interests."
Washington is also interested in discussions, as it needs Islamabad's cooperation to negotiate an end to the Afghan war, many of the insurgent leaders of which are based in Pakistan.
The resolution establishes a framework for talks between senior American and Pakistani officials in the coming weeks.
94pc of legislators kept quiet during debate on US ties: report
From the Newspaper |  | 12 hours ago
Only 28 of the 445 legislators in the NA and Senate debated on the PCNS recommendations for a total of 338 minutes.—File photo
ISLAMABAD: During the joint session of parliament which continued from March 20 to April 12, 94 per cent of the parliamentarians did not participate in the debate on the recommendations of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security about the relations with the US.
Only 28 of the 445 legislators in the National Assembly and Senate debated on the PCNS recommendations for a total of 338 minutes.
This constituted 25 per cent of the total session time of 22 hours and 22 minutes.
Only four per cent of the 341 MNAs and only 13 per cent of the 104 Senators spoke on the ties with the US.
The PCNS was formed in the wake of a Nato attack on the Salala checkpost that killed 24 troops in November last year. It has been mentioned in a report, released by the Free and Fair Election Network on Friday.
The report said the longest joint session in Pakistan’s parliamentary history unanimously approved the new recommendations on relations with the US and general foreign policy.
However, the debate showed the parliamentarians were reluctant to share their thoughts on resetting the ties, which included issues of opening land supply lines for Nato troops in Afghanistan and the drone strikes in Pakistan.
With only one-fourth of the session time being consumed for actually discussing the PCNS report, the rest of the time was taken up to discuss target killings in Karachi and Balochistan, sectarian violence in Gilgit-Baltistan, increase in prices of petroleum products and power outages and a string of other issues.
Although the opposition parties, Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (Fazl) rejected the first draft of the recommendations, their legislators were conspicuous by their absence during the debate.
Three PML-N Senators and two MNAs took part in the debate. The party has 104 legislators in the two houses of the parliament.
The report mentioned that one parliamentarian each from the Awami National Party, JUI-F, Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal Party (MMAP) and the Pakistan Muslim League (Functional) took part in the debate.
Similarly, 32 Muttahida Qaumi Movement legislators in the two houses and 12 Independents in the Senate stayed away from the debate.

Imran fears of suicide attacks if Nato supply resumes
 | 2 hours ago
Imran Khan said that the political actors formed a consensus on the PCNS recommendations in order to cover up for each others’ corruption. -File Photo
LAHORE: Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairperson Imran Khan on Saturday said that the Nato supply has already been resumed in the name of so called ‘national interest’, DawnNews reported.
The PTI chief added that, as a response, if there is any suicide attack in the country, the common people would have to bear the cost of it.
Addressing a meeting in Lahore, Khan said that the political actors have gathered on one platform and formed a consensus on the PCNS recommendations in order to cover up for each others’ corruption.
Khan’s remarks came after the parliament reached a consensus to no more let Pakistan serve as conduitof arms to Afghanistan, but gave a green signal for a resumption of non-lethal Nato supplies to the war-ravaged country.
Imran said the system of slavery is prevalent in the country and people are being economically prosecuted.
Politicians fear that if PTI comes to power then they will have to face accountability, Khan said.
“People want a change and only PTI can bring this change,” PTI chairman added.
“Around 80 percent of the people have joined PTI on the recommendation of their children,” Khan revealed.
“All the corrupt politicians have reached a ‘so-called consensus’ just to avoid the change but they will not be able to stop the ‘tsunami’ of the youth,” the PTI chairman asserted

American lawmaker seeks scaling back US aid to Pakistan

By: INP | April 14, 2012, 3:15 pm | 4
American lawmaker seeks scaling back US aid to Pakistan
A powerful American lawmaker has sought to scale back the US civilian aid to Pakistan unless Islamabad makes satisfactory action against the militant groups, in particular the Afghanistan-based Haqqani network.
Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen has also sought to end US foreign assistance to countries like India, China and Brazil who are economically viable enough to maintain their own assistance programmes.
Ros-Lehtinen, chairwoman of the powerful House Foreign affairs Committee, expressed her views in a letter to Congressmen Paul Ryan and Chris Van Hollen, who are respectively chairman and ranking member of the house committee on budget.
Ros-Lehtinen said few relationships are as complex and challenging as that between the US and Pakistan.
"While there is some hope for modest improvements in the relationship this year, such gains will likely be tactical and incremental - not strategic game changers," she wrote.
She said the Congress must be clear about its expectations for the relationship.
"Absent credible steps to address longstanding United States concerns about official Pakistani support for the activities of violent non-state actors along the Afghan border and elsewhere in the region, the majority cannot support continued assistance at current levels," she said.
She said the Foreign Relations Authorization Act and analogous language contained in the end-year appropriations bill restrict the use of most foreign assistance authorities for Pakistan unless the Secretary of State can certify that Pakistan is cooperating with the US in efforts against the Haqqani Network and other extremist groups.
More broadly, the most recent quarterly report of the office of the inspector general (OIG) for US civilian assistance to Afghanistan and Pakistan states that although Congress appropriated USD 1.48 billion for civilian assistance to Pakistan in FY12, only USD 618 million was obligated.
In addition, over the last three years, USD 1.632 in obligated development funding (equal to 38 per cent of total obligated civilian assistance since 2009) remains unspent.
Given the political and diplomatic difficulties in the US-Pakistan relationship, she said it would make more sense to scale back the pace of appropriations for civilian assistance in Pakistan, so that such funds are used more judiciously and sustainably over a longer period of time.
"It must be noted that the government of Pakistan has repeatedly said that if the United States wants to support economic development in Pakistan, it should do so through a greater reliance on trade rather than aid policy," she said.
In this spirit, she argued that the budget committee must urge the executive branch to look toward trade policy as an increasingly important tool in its efforts to foster stability in Pakistan and the broader South Asian region.

Fazl warns govt against Nato supplies

Updated 6 hours ago

ShareThis1  0  1 0

By Muhammad Anis
ISLAMABAD: JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman Friday warned the government against the restoration of Nato supplies, saying there would be no resumption through the air or land route.

Addressing a press conference here at his residence, the JUI-F chief rejected the impression that the Parliament had paved the way for re-opening of Nato supply routes via Pakistan. “The recommendations of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PCNS) forbid the use of Pakistan territory for all types of Nato supplies,” he said.As the JUI-F clarified its position with regards the resumption of Nato supplies, the major opposition party, PML-N, is yet to come up with any clarification on the issue.
Flanked by Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri and Maulana Attaur Rehman, Maulana Fazlur Rehman maintained that following the adoption of recommendations of PCNS, the government will also not facilitate restoration of Nato supplies on an administrative basis.

The Maulana said his party would strongly resist granting permission for restoration Nato supplies for lethal and non-lethal goods.To a question, he said the prime minister had given his word to implement the recommendations of PCNS as okayed by the parliament and he should fulfill his commitment through practical demonstration.

He pointed out that it was the JUI-F that emphasised doing away with past verbal agreements with the United States and Nato countries. ìNow the government is not bound to follow any verbal agreements with the United States,î he said, adding that his party also forced the government to withdraw earlier recommendations like allowing the activities of foreign agents in the country.

He said the recommendations adopted by the parliament had set the direction for the country’s foreign policy and now the nature of Pakistan’s relations with the United States would be quite different. “Pakistan is now no more any ally of the United States as it was after verbal agreements between the two countries,” he said.

Fazlur Rehman maintained that any terms of engagement with the United States would be strictly according to PCNS recommendations.

“Every new agreement will now be made according to clause no 8 of the recommendations and the government will have to face strong resistance if it tries to act otherwise,” he maintained.He expressed hope that consensus would also be evolved on the Domestic Violence Bill.

Tidak ada komentar:

Posting Komentar