Sunday, July 18, 2004

Pakistan may Reconsider Volunteers to Iraq

Pakistan Link Headlines: "Govt., may think over volunteers to Iraq, says Rashid

RAWALPINDI : The government could think over sending some volunteers to Iraq for the protection of United Nations installations, however there is no such decision as yet.

Information Minister Shaikh Rashid Ahmad said this on Saturday while talking to newsmen at Pindi Cantonment where he inaugurated a water filtration plant and tube-well.

“We don’t want to receive coffins of our troops and as such question of sending military troops to Iraq doesn’t arise,” Rashid said when asked if there was any plan of sending troops to Iraq.

In reply to a question about Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage assertion that there were militants training camps for cross-border terrorism in Pakistan, the federal information minister said, “The United States should see the ground realities, the rampant human rights violations and state terrorism in the Indian occupied Kashmir and play an effective role to protect the rights of Kashmir people as guaranteed under the United Nations resolutions.”

He said Richard Armitage claim should be taken in the same way as the United States intelligence agencies report over the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that proved totally wrong.

“All what is said about the presence of terror training camps in Pakistan is part of well-designed propaganda which is false and malicious,” the information minister further said.

He said that Pakistan is a peace-loving country and wanted promotion of peace in the region is its top priority.

In reply to another question about the appointment of Ashraf Jehangir Qazi as UN Secretary General’s envoy to Iraq, the information minister said “this is a matter of pride for Pakistan.” He also rejected the negative propaganda by the opposition in this regard.

Earlier, while addressing the function to inaugurate water schemes for Rawalpindi areas, Shaikh Rashid announced two crore rupees for establishing a sound water distributions network and ordered start of work on this project. He also reviewed other projects related to his constituency"


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