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Sharif rebukes US official Boucher

In an angry rebuke to the US, former premier Nawaz Sharif says his country do not need any foreign advise over handling Pervez Musharraf.

world Updated: Jul 03, 2008 12:35 IST

In an angry rebuke to the US, former premier Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said his country did not need any foreign advise over handling Pervez Musharraf after a top American official contended that the fate of the President was not the most pressing issue confronting Pakistan.

"Pakistan will take decisions on its own. What is to be done with an unconstitutional President is Pakistan's internal matter. There is no need for any foreign advice," Sharif told reporters at Islamabad airport shortly after his arrival in Islamabad from Lahore this morning.

US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher had yesterday said that Pakistan should focus more on security, extremism, rising food costs and power shortages and less on the fate of Musharraf.

"President Musharraf isn't the issue right now, this is not the problem that Pakistan faces right now," Boucher told a news conference on Wednesday after meeting Musharraf and other Pakistani leaders.

Sharif, the chief of the PML-N which is a key partner in the ruling coalition led by the Pakistan People's Party, criticized the operation launched by security forces against militants in the tribal region.

He said the government had not taken its allies into confidence before starting the operation in the Khyber Agency near Peshawar, the capital of the North West Frontier Province.