Pakistan’s foreign office has clarified that the US and Pakistan would not discuss any nuclear deal, “nor has the US made any demands on Pakistan”.
The clarification came ahead of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to the US at the invitation of US President Barack Obama. The clarification came in response to the speculation that US and Pakistan were examining the possibility of a nuclear deal under which the US is trying to put limits on Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal.
Foreign office spokesperson said in response to a question regarding certain comments and articles appearing in the media about the PM’s visit to Washington, that “many of them appear to be an attempt to confuse the readers and generate controversy, where there is none, on issues of national importance”.
“In any case, history is a testimony to the fact that PM Sharif accepts no demand from any state. He firmly believes in policies directed at preserving, protecting and promoting Pakistan’s national interests,” he said.
In a related statement issued ahead of the visit, Sharif said on Sunday that Pakistan is a responsible sovereign nuclear state and its strategic assets are secured under a fool proof arrangement. “Pakistan’s nuclear status is deterrence against any external aggression,” Sharif said.
“Being a sovereign country having a strong democratic dispensation, Pakistan has rendered unmatched sacrifices in the war on terror as a front-line state,” the PM said, adding even now Operation Zarb-e-Azb’s success is a manifestation of Pakistan’s unwavering commitment to root out terrorism and extremism from each and every nook and corner of the country. “We are fighting this war to not only ensure the peace and prosperity of our country alone but also to make South Asia, and the region beyond a hub of peace and development,” he said.