Islamabad: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has ruled out the possibility of US boots on Pakistani ground, saying that the option “may have been raised, but it was not at all considered” at a national security meeting in Washington.
When asked to confirm during a roundtable interview with Pakistani news channels whether the option of sending ground troops to Pakistan was raised in a recent national security meeting chaired by US President Barack Obama, Hillary replied: “Well, everything is raised in a meeting with people sitting around a table, and that has – that reflects the worry and the frustration for this reason.”
She pointed out that as the Secretary of State, she is responsible for the lives and the well-being of US diplomats and employees and America’s local employees in embassies across the globe.
“We have been warning about the Haqqanis, we’ve been warning about safe havens, we have presented information and evidence, we have shared intelligence,” Hillary emphasised.
She stated that the US does not want to launch unilateral military action in Pakistan, but also stressed that there should be no misunderstanding about the necessity of action against militants.
“We don’t want to act unilaterally. We want to act in concert with our friends, our partners, our strategic allies in Pakistan, but we don’t want there to be any misunderstanding that we have to act, otherwise there will be perhaps an incident in the future that takes it out of the hands of any president. We don’t want to get to that, and it’s something that we are doing everything we can to avoid,” Hillary said.
“So when we talk about actions, we talk about specific things we can do together. But a lot of it depends upon cooperation with our Pakistani counterpart. We think that is far better than having some disaster happen that requires some kind of response, which we are not at all interested in getting to. We want to avoid that,” she added.