No decision about resumption of NATO supplies: says Kaira
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira said that meeting of the Defence Committee of the Cabinet (DCC) concluded inconclusive, adding that final decision regarding resumption of NATO supply-line will be taken after further consultations.
Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani chaired a high-level meeting to review Pakistan’s ailed relations with the United States and find out ways to resume supplies to allied forces battling in Afghanistan.
The land routes for foreign forces were closed down in November 2011 in reprisal to a NATO attack on a Pakistani border post that had killed 24 troops and strained Pakistan-US relations to the breaking point.
Briefing the media after the meeting Kaira observed, “No final decision has been taken about re-opening of the NATO supply routes by the committee”.
The panel, however, asked the concerned ministries to finalize the terms and conditions regarding restoration of land route of allied forces, which is renamed as Ground Line of Communication (GCL) on priority bases.
Earlier, NATO Secretary General telephoned President Zardari, inviting him to Pakistan for a key summit in Chicago, which indicates the decision to resume supply line for NATO forces was foregone conclusion.
Under the new terms and conditions, a new clause should be incorporated, as recommended by parliament, to the effect that only non-lethal cargo would be allowed to transit through Pakistan.
According to the official sources, the new terms and conditions have already been finalized for the resumption of land routes for allied forces. Federal Cabinet will formally approve the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Wednesday.
Without getting an unconditional apology from the American administration for the brutal NATO attack and a halt in the drone strikes, the government went ahead to resume the supply line.
These were the key preconditions proposed by parliament last month for revisiting relations with the US.
The committee stated that the foreign ministry would continue to remain engaged with the American officials on the recommendation proposed by the Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PCNS) to tame the possible public backlash.
The DCC also welcomed the unconditional invitation for Chicago summit to President Asif Zardari.
Over 60 countries will gather to discuss the Afghan endgame. Last week, the NATO chief had tacitly linked Pakistan’s participation in the summit with the resumption of supply lines.
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