US-Pak ties deteriorate; Gilani musters political support
Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has convened an all-Party conference
here Thursday to devise a future course of action as Islamabad's
ties with Washington deteriorated following a US accusation that
Pakistan was supporting the Haqqani terror network linked to Al
Islamabad: The Haqqani
network, which the US now holds responsible for recent attacks on
the US embassy in Kabul, was the "blue-eyed boy" of the CIA for
many years, Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar has said.
US military commanders have accused Pakistan's spy agency, the
Inter-Services Intelligence, of supporting the Haqqani network for
carrying out two attacks on the US embassy in Kabul and US
military base in Afghanistan's Wadak province this month.
Khar rejected US accusations against the ISI, and said it has no
links with the Haqqani network.
She made the remark in an interview with Al Jazeera, reported
Associated Press of Pakistan Monday.
"If we talk about links, I am sure the CIA (Central Intelligence
Agency) also has links with many terrorist organisations around
the world, by which we mean intelligence links," she said.
"And this particular network, which (the United States) continues
to talk about, is a network which was the blue-eyed boy of the CIA
itself for many years."
Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen Sep
22 accused the Pakistani government of supporting the Al Qaeda-linked
Mullen called the Haqqani network a "veritable arm" of the ISI.
He said the ISI-supported Haqqani network was behind recent
attacks in Afghanistan, including the Sep 11 truck bomb attack and
the Sep 13 assault on the US embassy in Kabul.
On Mullen' statement, the minister said: "It is something that
goes very, very unappreciated on our side. This is
unsubstantiated. No evidence has been shared with us."
Partners and allies, she said, do not talk to each other through
Islamabad has taken up the matter with Washington, but the spate
of hostile statements coming from senior US officials meant that
the US has taken a policy decision, Khar said.
If that was the case, then "we have the right to make our own
"I just hope that we'll be given a chance to cooperate with each
other and the doors will remain open - because statements like
this are pretty much close to shutting those doors," she added.