PM's disqualification delays signing of NATO supply deal
21 June, 2012
ISLAMABAD: Disqualification of Yousaf Raza Gilani as prime minister has delayed signing of accord between the US and Pakistan over the NATO supply as an agreement in this connection is ready, diplomatic sources said on Wednesday.
Political leadership's decision was awaited for signature on the agreement but talks on it suspended temporarily as the cabinet was dissolved.
Asked for his official version, acting US embassy spokesman Robert Raines said that it is true that as a result of talks on technical level an agreement was ready.
"The US is desiring for early resolution of the issue."
Asked how political changes following the Supreme Court's verdict in Pakistan would affect talks on ties between Washington and Islamabad, he said, "I would not comment on internal matters of the country but political decision on NATO supply was awaited and talks at political level was very important."
Diplomatic sources said that Washington is concerned about the situation in Pakistan and wishes for settlement in accordance with law of the land in a peaceful manner.
However, sources said that talks at political level to give final touches to the agreement between the two countries would be started as soon as political situation in Pakistan becomes clear and the new cabinet takes charge of the affairs.
"The delay in talks may be delayed for some weeks if we assume that affairs would move smoothly till the new cabinet takes oath."
State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nauland told reporters in Washington on Tuesday that the US was not expecting any turmoil in Pakistan as a result of the court's decision.
About the future course between the two countries, she said that the Pakistani government was to decide how to go forward from this situation (Pakistan's internal situation) and she avoided commenting in details before the time.
Sources said that Washington softened stance on apology over Salala and the agreement was near as the US was focusing on agreed points and wanted to move ahead.
Diplomatic sources said that nothing conclusive could be said until the new cabinet and prime minister take oath, however, they hoped that talks would not be affected in future.