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US fighting 'wrong war' against 'wrong people': Sartaj Aziz

09 January, 2014

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ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said on Wednesday that America is fighting the "wrong war with wrong methods against the wrong people".

Sartaj Aziz said Pakistan has been protesting against the drone attacks at all levels, as these are un-productive and violate Pakistan's sovereignty. Talking to newsmen after addressing a book launching ceremony at the Islamabad Institute of Strategic Study, the foreign affairs adviser said Pakistan has got support from the international community on its stance on drone attacks.

He said a resolution by the United Nations General Assembly has also been adopted to condemn the drone attacks, which reflects the international public opinion. He said this also speaks of legality and illegality of the use of drones.

Reiterating Pakistan's position on the drone attacks that they violate sovereignty of the country and cause collateral damage, Aziz said Pakistan will continue to protest against these attacks at all levels. He said according to the United States drone strikes have achieved the desired results, as high value targets have been killed in these strikes, therefore, now these drone attacks should be stopped.

He said Pakistan's next move will be to approach the United Nations Human Rights Commission in Geneva against drone attacks and make efforts for adoption of a similar resolution there. He said Pakistan will continue to build international opinion against drone attacks. Sartaj Aziz said government is using force against those elements who are challenging its writ in the tribal areas. Replying to a question, he said the use of force by Pervez Musharraf damaged the tribal culture and made it difficult for the government to resolve the issue of militants in the region.

The adviser said the "war on terror" in the last over ten years has achieved less and caused more damage, especially in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He said due to the war, the local public in these areas has turned against the government and some criminal elements have intruded into the area, who are now disturbing the situation. Replying to a question on the progress of negotiations with Taliban, Sartaj Aziz said some contacts have been established in this connection but refused to elaborate on the development of these talks.

He said besides starting negotiations with the Taliban and initiating development projects in the tribal areas, the government has decided to strengthen the border areas to stop illegal movement of people across the border.

He said the government has established its writ in seven of the eight tribal agencies and was making efforts to establish its writ in the eight agency. Earlier, while addressing the function to launch the book "The Thistle and the Drone: How America's War on Terror Became a Global War on Tribal Islam" written by renowned writer Akbar Ahmad, Sartaj Aziz said tribal culture and ethics should be ensured to ensure peace and security in these areas.

Appreciating the efforts of Akbar Ahmed in writing a comprehensive book on the issue of war against terror and tribal culture, he agreed that the war had destroyed the tribal culture. Aziz said that the use of drones against tribal people is paradoxical. He said that in dissecting the conflict, the analogy of thistle and the drones is very revealing.

He said that America is fighting the wrong war with wrong methods against the wrong people. Speaking on the occasion ISSI Chairman Khalid Mehmood said that ethnicity and tribal identity is a crucial factor to terrorism.

End.

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