Friday, December 2, 2011

Pakistan to show NATO zero tolerance

Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar (R) looks on as the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton addresses a joint press conference in Islamabad on October 21, 2011.

Source: Press TV

Pakistan has said that it would no longer tolerate the spilling of the blood of its citizens at the hands of the US-led forces, who violate its sovereignty.

"Enough is enough. The government will not tolerate any incident of spilling even a single drop of any civilian or soldier's blood," Pakistani daily The News reported on Thursday, quoting Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar as telling lawmakers in Pakistan's capital Islamabad.

Pakistan would discontinue its support for the US-led war in Afghanistan if its sovereignty was violated again, she added.

On November 26, US-led NATO helicopters and fighter jets carried out airstrikes on two military checkpoints in the northwest of Pakistan, killing 24 Pakistani soldiers and wounding dozens of others.

The attack has fueled the anti-American sentiment among the Pakistani people and prompted a harshly-toned condemnation from the country's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

Khar said there would be no compromise on the country's national interests.

The minister added that Islamabad's recent retaliatory decision to order the US to vacate Pakistan's Shamsi airbase in the northwestern province of Balochistan was final.

On Wednesday, a senior Pakistani Army official said the attack had been a deliberate act of blatant aggression.

"Detailed information of the posts was already with ISAF (the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force), including map references, and it was impossible that they did not know these to be our posts," said Major General Ashfaq Nadeem, Army's Director General of Military Operations.

Thousands have marched in all major Pakistani cities, including Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Peshawar, Charsada, Nowshera, and Rawalpindi to condemn the strikes.

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