Pak govt, Army fear US' impatience over terror war may destabilize country

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Islamabad, June 20 : Washington's opposition to peace deals in Pakistan's restive tribal areas and its demand for military operations in these areas amid growing number of attacks by pro-Taliban extremists on the US-led coalition forces in Afghanistan, might harm stability in Pakistan, fear the ruling circles and the military in Islamabad.

According to The Nation, higher officials privy to the recent developments on Pak-US relations reveal that the authorities in Pakistan were "deeply perturbed' over what they believe the growing 'impatience' of Bush administration with the rise in cross-border attacks against the coalition forces in Afghanistan for which the militants based in Pakistan's tribal areas are blamed.

It's not only the newly elected rulers that fear Pakistan's stability could be at stake in case of further use of force in Waziristan, Bajaur and other tribal areas, but the military authorities also feel the same way, added the paper.

"We believe the peace deals in Waziristan and other tribal areas be given a chance to succeed that will go a long way in isolating those who believe in extremism and militancy," the paper quoted a senior government official as saying here on Thursday.

The unidentified official further said that with militants isolated, the space provided could be utilized to go for much needed development of tribal areas that could help curb the extremism in the poverty ridden and backward frontier regions.

"We have used the option of force time and again and it didn't work rather it brought death and destruction. The decision to go for peace agreements has been taken after taking cognizance of all pros and cons and hence dialogue must be given a fair chance,' he said.

Nonetheless, he added, having said all that, Pakistani troops deployed on country's shared border with Afghanistan would continue with their best efforts to halt the illegal cross frontier movement.

According to officials, the anti-US sentiment is on the rise in Pakistan, but the recent attack by the coalition forces on a Pakistani border post in Mohmand Agency added a lot to these emotions. "The Americans called it an accident, some in Washington even dubbed it as an attack in self-defense but the reality is that it shocked the entire country," the official said.

Another government official said the Americans must understand Pakistan's situation, it was not only facing the grave political crisis, but in addition to that the number of people, who believed that a key role in US-led war on terror had badly harmed the interests of country, was increasing.

ANI

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