"ISI's political wing not yet terminated, only made inactive"

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Islamabad, Nov 25 : A senior security official in Pakistan has reportedly contradicted the country's Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi's statement that the political wing of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) had been closed.

On Sunday Qureshi had told reporters in Multan that the ISI political wing had been disbanded, saying: "The ISI is a precious national institution and wants to focus on counter-terrorism activities."

Denying this, the senior Pakistani security official said that the ISI political wing still existed, but had been made 'inactive'. The ISI staff of the department had not been given new assignments, the Daily Times quoted him as saying.

According to the report, ISI chief Lt Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha had focused on counter-terrorism during his previous assignment as the director general of Military Operations, and is expected to keep terrorism his top priority in his new office.

In the past, the ISI has been accused of several questionable political activities in the past, including the creation of an anti-PPP alliance in the 1988 general elections and uniting several factions of the PML to form a pro-Pervez Musharraf party in 2002.

ISI officials too have often admitted that interfering with the political process had cost the agency the trust of the people.


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