United States lawmakers draw angry rebuke from Pakistan

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Pakistan slammed remarks of some US Congressmen, warning that such ‘unwarranted criticism’ can dent Pakistan’s ongoing efforts against terrorism on Thursday .“Pakistan and its citizens have sacrificed a lot in war against terror, but it is regrettable that US parliamentarians have no realisation that how much it lost to curb the menace,” Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said.

US Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale called on Nisar on Thursday, according to a statement issued by Ministry of Interior.

Nisar criticised remarks made by US lawmakers in a joint hearing of Congressional subcommittees on terrorism, non-proliferation, trade and Asia and Pacific earlier this week on whether Pakistan was a friend or a foe of the US. They called for cutting off aid to Islamabad in addition to listing the country as a ‘state sponsoring terrorism’.

“Unwarranted criticism and baseless accusations can dent Pakistan’s ongoing efforts to achieve common interests for durable peace in the region,” Nisar told Hale.

He said it was unfortunate that US Congressmen failed to acknowledge the heavy price paid by Pakistan against terror ism and resorted to levelling baseless allegations.

“Such statements have fuelled strong reaction among Pakistanis,” Nisar lamented as he acknowledged that the US knows Pakistan’s achievements in fighting terrorism, especially in the ongoing military operation Zarb-e-Azb.

US envoy admitted that Pakistan has made sincere efforts to restore peace in the region. Hale also hailed theministry’s efforts regarding overall security in Pakistan.

Nisar’s comments come a few months after US Congress blocked funding for eight Pakistan-bound F-16s.

Meanwhile, Chairman Senate Raza Rabbani said that people of Pakistan were appalled at the views expressed by certain American lawmakers. “This seems to have become an unfortunate pattern of blaming Pakistan for the mistakes made by American policymakers in Afghanistan and elsewhere in the Muslim world,” a statement issued by Rabbani’s office read.

Such sentiments, Rabbani said, demonstrate a lack of respect and recognition of the tremendous contribution made by the Pakistan and its armed forces against terrorism.

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