Pak FO allays US' fears, says negotiations only with compliant militants

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Islamabad, Apr 25 : Following reports of US' concerns over Pakistan government's proposed peace talks with tribal militants, Pakistan's Foreign Office has said that the government would hold talks only with those who would lay down their arms, and would neither use Pakistani territory for terrorism nor harbour foreign militants.

Allaying fears that the proposed peace deal with the militants would also fail like in the past, FO spokesman Muhammad Sadiq said that Pakistan's strategy to counter terrorism covered the political, socio-economic and military aspects.

History suggested that the use of force alone could lead to continuation of violence in the tribal areas, the Daily Times quoted Sadiq as saying.

Speaking to reports at a regular press briefing, he denied the claims that Tehreek Nifaz-e-Shariat-e-Muhammadi (TNSM) chief Sufi Muhammad's release was aimed at securing the safe release of kidnapped Pakistani Ambassador to Afghanistan Tariq Azizuddin. "There is absolutely no link between the two," he said and added that the ambassador was safe and strenuous efforts were in progress for his early and safe release.

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