ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar Monday indicated that Pakistan intend to restore the NATO supply suspended six months ago and causing tension between the west and Islamabad.
Addressing a press conference along with Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira here at the foreign office, the foreign minister said, “We want to move toward positive zone.”
She said that Pakistan is interested in charges for NATO supply as the transportation damages infrastructure but Islamabad never charged a single penny on the supply in the last 10 or 12 years.
The foreign minister said that there are over 40 countries associated with NATO and ISAF. “Turkey, Japan, Malaysia, UK and others are part of it,” she added.
She said that the government had made its point by closing the route for nearly six months in retaliation of the attack against Pakistan’s Salala in November.
On apology over the Salala and halt to drone strikes, Khar said that as the parliament in its recommendations had demanded “we asked the US to entreat apology” and Pakistan had always opposed drone attack and it would continue its struggle to resolve the issue.
“It was important to make a point, Pakistan has made a point and now we can move on,” Khar said when asked whether she believed Pakistan should reopen the supply to NATO in Afghanistan.
Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar’s comments offered the clearest indication of reopening NATO route and she talked on levying charges on the supplies.
To a question on the consultations and recent meetings of the ISAF and US officials with the Pakistani authorities over the issue, she said that the parliament had finalized and submitted its recommendations and now Pakistan is negotiating its ties with the US as well as other issues in the light of the guidelines given by the parliament.
She said that Pakistan and the US have divergence in some areas while share views in other areas and “we want to move to some positive zone over all the issues”.
The foreign minister said that Pakistan wants good relations with the world community and the west. “It is a minority which doesn’t want ties with the west and majority want good relations with the world’s countries.”
She said that Pakistan is a facilitator for peace and stability in Afghanistan and it has been playing the role and would continue to facilitate peace and stability. “We want to play a role in the world that could be more recognized and respected.”
To a question, she said that the Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani visit had nothing to do with reviewing ties with the US or restoration of the NATO supply. In fact strategic dialogues are going on between the UK and Pakistan and the British Prime Minister who visited Islamabad last year had invited the prime minister.
The Defence Committee of the Cabinet is going to meet today (Tuesday) as the prime minister has convened its meeting, in which a major breakthrough pertaining to restoration of NATO supply is expected. The DCC meeting would followed by a meeting of the cabinet, said an official.