Pak to decide anti-militancy drive in North Waziristan: Kausar

Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Guv said govt mulls drone attacks as counter-productive.

Updated: Feb 25, 2011, 12:39 PM IST

Peshawar: A decision on launching an anti-militancy operation in North Waziristan tribal region is the sole prerogative of the Pakistan government and no foreign pressure will be accommodated in this regard, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Governor Masood Kausar said.

In his first interaction with journalists after assuming the office of Governor, Kausar said it is for Pakistan to decide about the timing of a military operation in North Waziristan Agency.

The government will launch such operations wherever it deemed necessary to flush out militants and it will not succumb to any foreign dictate in this regard, he said.

Asked about US drone attacks in Pakistan`s tribal belt, he said the government has a clear policy and considered such attacks counter-productive as they undermine efforts to bring lasting peace to the militancy-plagued region.

The government does not welcome drone attack as many innocent civilians have lost lives in these strikes and is doing its best to resolve the matter at a diplomatic level,
Kausar said during the interaction yesterday.

A stable Afghanistan is a must for establishing durable peace in Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province and the tribal belt, he said.

Unless peace is restored in Afghanistan, the problems in northwest Pakistan will continue, Khyber governor said. The Afghan people can resolve their problems by themselves and Pakistan can only assist them in doing so, Kasusar said.

"Maintaining friendly and cordial relations with Afghanistan is a corner stone of the Pakistan People’s Party policy as we share many things with them," he said.

Asked about efforts launched to trace kidnapped Islamia College University vice chancellor Ajmal Khan, Kausar said he was optimistic about his early and safe recovery as sincere efforts were being made by concerned people.

"We are collecting the latest information in the matter on a day-to-day basis and the matter is not being overlooked," he explained.

Referring to his priorities, Kausar said establishing peace topped his list of priorities and he would take all the people on board in achieving goals in this regard.

The working relations between the coalition partners in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa , the Awami National Party and the PPP, are exemplary and they have unanimity on all the major issues facing the province, he said.