Pakistan blocks US bin Laden hunt

Senior diplomat says foreign troops will not carry out operations in Pakistan.

    Qureshi said his government will block any foreign military operation in Pakistan [AFP]

    "Our government's policy is that our troops, paramilitary forces and our regular forces are deployed in sufficient numbers. They are capable of taking action there. And any foreign intrusion would be counter-productive," Qureshi told the Associated Press news agency.

    "People will not accept it. Questions of sovereignty come in."

    Qureshi acknowledged that "there are some infiltrations" still occurring, but he said no covert US military operations to catch al-Qaeda figures, Taliban members or any other suspected fighters, had been staged.

    "There are none," he said.

    The new Pakistani government's pursuit of peace deals with tribal groups in the region has been highly criticised in Washington. 

    However, Qureshi had reassured Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, at a meeting held on Friday that his government was doing everything it can to combat lawless tribal areas bordering Afghanistan.

    Pakistan and Afghanistan have regularly exchanged criticism of each others efforts in fighting armed groups operating along their long, remote, mountainous border.

    Qureshi described Pakistan's counterterrorism efforts as a "grassroots" approach.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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