• Wednesday, September 28, 2022

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Pakistan says no US military base exists on its soil

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

PAKISTAN has categorically denied the presence of any US military or airbase on its soil.

No proposal for a US military base in Pakistan is envisaged, foreign affairs ministry spokesman Zahid Hafeez Chaudri said, adding that although cooperation in terms of “air and ground lines of communication” has existed between the two countries since 2001, there has been “no new agreement”.

“There is no US military or air base in #Pakistan; nor is any such proposal envisaged. Any speculation on this account is baseless and irresponsible and should be avoided. Pakistan and the U.S. have a framework of cooperation in terms of Air Lines of Communication (ALOC) and Ground Lines of Communication (GLOC) in place since 2001. No new agreement has been made in this regard”, he said in a two-part tweet on late Monday (24) night.

His clarification followed reports of a Pentagon official telling an American senate panel that Pakistan allowed the US military to use its airspace and gave it ground access to support Washington’s presence in Afghanistan.

US assistant secretary of defence for Indo-Pacific affairs told the US Senate Armed Services Committee that the country would continue to hold dialogues with Pakistan which “has a critical role in restoring peace to Afghanistan”.

The report created ripples in Pakistan with opposition parties demanding that prime minister Imran Khan make clear his position on the matter.

PML-N leader Khawaja Saad Rafique sought to know why the federal government did not take the national assembly into confidence over having a military understanding with the US.

Jamaat Islami chief Sirajul Haq said allowing the US army to use military bases in Pakistan would “invite danger” to the country, reminding the government that the nation had already paid a heavy price for getting involved in “others’ wars”.

Eastern Eye

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