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Cameron's Pak warning: FO mulling asking Zardari not to visit UK

British Premier David Cameron's warning to Pakistan to stop promoting the "export of terror" appears to have cast a shadow on bilateral ties, with the Foreign Office even debating the possibility of asking President Asif Ali Zardari to call off an upcoming visit to London.

world Updated: Jul 30, 2010 16:39 IST

British Premier David Cameron's warning to Pakistan to stop promoting the "export of terror" appears to have cast a shadow on bilateral ties, with the Foreign Office even debating the possibility of asking President Asif Ali Zardari to call off an upcoming visit to London.

Cameron said in Bangalore on Wednesday that Pakistan should not have ties with groups that promote the export of terror to Afghanistan or India.

Following an angry reaction from Islamabad, Cameron defended his remarks, saying that it was "important to speak frankly" and that while Pakistan had "made progress... we need them to do more" to tackle terrorism.

Senior officials of the Foreign Office here were particularly irked that the British Premier made the remarks during a visit to India, and especially after three senior British leaders had visited Pakistan following the formation of the new government in the UK, diplomatic sources told PTI.

The officials last night discussed the possibility of Zardari calling off his visit to Britain next month to convey Pakistan's displeasure but the presidency insisted that he would go ahead with the trip, the sources said.

Though no official announcement has been made as yet, Zardari is expected to reach London on August 3 after completing a three-day visit to France.

During the weekly news briefing in the Foreign Office yesterday, spokesman Abdul Basit said Zardari's visit to Britain "is on" and would be announced at an "appropriate time."