Islamabad: In the wake of the recent NATO and the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) intrusions into Pakistani territory, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has stated that the government might consider “other options,” if the US-led forces went on with their cross-border air strikes.
Speaking in the National Assembly, Gilani assured the nation that the government would consider every available option to stop any violation of Pakistani territory, and if NATO did not apologise for the recent violations, other alternatives could also be utilised, the Daily Times reported.
“If they (NATO) don’t apologise and remove our apprehensions, we may consider other options as well,” he said in response to a point of order raised by Abdul Qadir Baloch.
Cooperation in the war on terrorism did not mean compromising on the national integrity and sovereignty, noted Gilani, adding that he had talked to US Senator John Kerry on this issue and asked him to share credible and actionable information with Pakistani intelligence authorities.
Pakistan is a responsible and nuclear state, he stressed, adding that being political people, “we have lodged a civilised protest” with NATO headquarters against their violation of the country’s air space.
Three Pakistani army men were killed in an early morning raid on Thursday, in an air strike by NATO helicopters at a military post, 200 metres inside the Pakistani border in Kurram Agency.
This was their fourth aerial violation of Pakistani territory in less than a week, but the first in which soldiers were killed. Reacting to the incident, Pakistan had suspended supply convoys along the Khyber Pass route, which links Peshawar in Pakistan with Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan, and lodged a protest with the NATO command in Brussels, demanding an apology.