Aziz denies reports of Al-Qaeda operatives' deaths
Earlier media reports said several Al-Qaeda members, including an explosives expert of the terrorist group, were killed in the US air strike.india Updated: Jan 21, 2006 14:15 IST
Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz has denied reports that Al-Qaeda operatives were among those killed in last week's US air strike on a tribal village bordering Afghanistan.
"As of an hour ago, when I last checked with security agencies combing the area, they have not found any tangible evidence that a particular group or any individual was there," Aziz told reporters on Friday evening after a meeting with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the UN headquarters in New York.
Earlier media reports said several Al-Qaeda members, including an explosives expert of the terrorist group, were killed in the US air strike, which left 18 civilians dead.
Aziz reiterated that his government condemned the US air strike, which has sparked massive protests in many Pakistani cities. He said he would raise the issue when meeting with US President George W Bush in Washington next week.
But the Pakistani prime minister pledged his country's firm support for the US campaign against terrorists. "Pakistan is totally committed to fighting war against terrorism and we're doing it out of conviction," he noted.
"As regards the relations between Pakistan and the US, or our conviction about fighting terrorism, there is no question that Pakistan is one of the countries which has done the most because we believe terrorism is no solution to any problems," he added.
First Published: Jan 21, 2006 14:15 IST