ISLAMABAD (AP) – Pakistan summoned the US ambassador to reject allegations in a Pentagon report that Islamabad supports militant proxies in neighbouring India and Afghanistan, a foreign ministry statement said Thursday.
It said Pakistani National Security and Foreign Affairs adviser Sartaj Aziz conveyed the complaint to US Ambassador Richard Olson in a meeting at the ministry.
The US Defence Department report, titled “Progress Towards Security and Stability in Afghanistan”, said militants continue to enjoy safe havens in Pakistan, which uses the fighters as a hedge against its loss of influence in Afghanistan and as a counterweight to India’s superior military.
The statement says the allegations are of particular concern now, given that the Pakistani military is waging a major offensive against militants in North Waziristan, a tribal region bordering Afghanistan. Pakistan launched the long-awaited operation in June, following years of allegations that it was turning a blind eye to militants who launch cross-border attacks on Afghan and NATO security forces.
Islamabad has always denied the allegations, and has accused Kabul of hosting militants that carry out attacks in Pakistan.