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Pak embassy protests NYT's Balochistan report

Pakistan has protested to the New York Times at the lack of attention given to the Govt's viewpoint on Balochistan.

india Updated: Apr 10, 2006 18:11 IST

Pakistan has reportedly protested to the New York Times at the "lack of attention" given to the government's viewpoint on Balochistan compared to the "generous space" accorded to rebel Baloch leader Nawab Akbar Bugti in a report carried April 2.

According to the Daily Times, a letter from the Pakistan embassy in Washington published by the NYT Sunday said: "You devote hundreds of lines to the rebel leader Nawab Akbar Bugti and the activities of the miscreants (outlaws) and only a few lines to the government's point of view on the situation in the province of Balochistan.

"The action taken by the Frontier Constabulary and other law-enforcing agencies is against the outlaws. The government is determined to establish its writ and execute development plans for the betterment of the people," the embassy's press minister Akram Shaheedi said.

"Anti-development forces are against the development plans that the government has put in place to benefit the Baloch people.

"Intelligence agencies also indicate that there could be a foreign hand behind the situation in the province. Our government is determined not to allow a handful of miscreants to hold Balochistan province and its people as their hostages," he said.

Mineral and gas rich Balochistsn in southwest Pakistan has witnessed months of violence with tribals attacking government and security installations, demanding greater economic and political rights.

They allege that the government is exploiting their resources without adequate compensation to the province.