News / Asia

Pakistan Holds Firm to Afghanistan Conference Boycott

Supporters of Pakistan's ruling People's Party rally to condemn NATO strikes on Pakistan troops, in Karachi, Pakistan, November 30, 2011.
Supporters of Pakistan's ruling People's Party rally to condemn NATO strikes on Pakistan troops, in Karachi, Pakistan, November 30, 2011.
Kurt Achin

Pakistan is holding firm to its boycott of the Bonn international conference on Afghanistan, and warns it will stay away from any future peace process unless its sovereignty and security concerns are better respected.  

With Pakistan conspicuously absent from Monday's international conference in Bonn, U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter went on domestic TV here in Islamabad to express Washington's disappointment.

"Afghanistan is Pakistan's neighbor. Pakistan deserves a voice at the table to talk about these things. We have tried to convince our Pakistani friends to attend. If they choose not to attend, that is their choice," said Munter.

Pakistani officials announced a boycott of the Bonn conference soon after U.S. helicopters and fighter jets reportedly fired on two Pakistani military encampments, killing 24 soldiers. Pakistan resisted all efforts to persuade it to send envoys to the conference, including a phone call Sunday, on the eve of the conference, to Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari from President Barack Obama, who expressed regret over the incident.

Ambassador Munter said Monday the United States is complying with a Pakistan's order to vacate U.S. personnel from an airbase in southwestern Pakistan. He repeated the White House's message that last week's attack was a "tragedy" and a "mistake." In an interview with Pakistan state television, he hinted that those responsible may face punishment.

"I can only say that we will have an investigation, and that if people have been found to have made mistakes, there will be results," he said.

Pakistani leaders says they are fully reviewing the terms for the country's engagement with the United States. Abdul Basit, a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad, said Pakistan supports Afghan peace efforts, but that last month's NATO attack created circumstances that would not permit Pakistan to attend the Bonn conference. He said if those circumstances do not change, it will be difficult for Pakistan to associate itself with any peace process in Afghanistan.

Pakistan's main demand is for better coordination between its military and the U.S.-led NATO stabilization force in Afghanistan to ensure that Pakistani sovereignty is respected.



You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid