Cameron should not apologise for speaking 'the truth': Ex-Brit envoy to Pak

Published: Monday, August 2, 2010, 15:54 [IST]
 

London, Aug 2(ANI): Former British Ambassador to Pakistan, Sir Hilary Synnott, reckons that British Prime Minister David Cameron should not apologise for his remarks that Pakistan was promoting the "export of terror" because he was speaking the truth.

There have been calls for an apology ahead of Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari's five-day visit to the United Kingdom, starting Tuesday.

"Should the Prime Minister now row back and ingratiate his visitor? Yes, it may matter, though time will tell. But no, there should be no apology for saying in public what has been said privately for years: the truth," The Telegraph quoted Synnott, as saying.

He insists that the Pakistanis were annoyed as the words were "uttered in India".

Synnott further admitted that in recent times Pakistan has cooperated in the US-led war on terror, but said that "terrorism emanating from Pakistan" has become an even bigger concern.

"The issue of terrorism emanating from Pakistan affects all 45 members of the coalition engaged in Afghanistan, particularly the British and Americans in Helmand and Kandahar, and India as well," Synnott said.

"The Pakistani army have always drawn a distinction between these and other groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba and the Haqqani network which they regard as 'freedom fighters', essentially para-military reservists for use in the event of conflict with India. These groups have found sanctuary in Pakistan while attacking Indian and coalition targets in Afghanistan," he added.

He said that it was unacceptable that a country, which the US describes as a 'strategic ally' should allow this even if the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) no longer provides active support. (ANI)


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