Pakistan's PM Gilani hits back at US accusations

By REUTERS
September 24, 2011 20:37

 
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ISLAMABAD - Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani used a dinner for aid agencies and foreign diplomats on Saturday to hit back against US assertions that his country's powerful spy agency was linked to militant groups fighting coalition troops in Afghanistan.

"The propaganda blitz against Pakistan is indeed most unfortunate," he said at the dinner, at an Islamabad hotel that was the target of a suicide truck bombing in 2008 that killed at least 54 people. "It vitiates the atmosphere and is counter-productive. It tends to ignore the sacrifices by the people of Pakistan and negates all that we have endeavored to achieve over the last so many years."

Gilani was responding to Senate testimony on Thursday by outgoing chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff Admiral Mike Mullen, who said Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate was linked to militant groups who carried out the Sept. 13 attack on the US embassy in Kabul, which killed 12 people.

"The allegations betray a confusion and policy disarray within the US establishment on the way forward in Afghanistan," Gilani said.

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