December 2002 News

US forces in Pak proves regime`s weakness: Qazi

8 December 2002
The Pioneer

Stating that allowing the US to use Pakistani soil as base was "weakness" of the military regime, chief of Jamaat-e-Islami Qazi Hussain Ahmed has said his alliance would not allow Americans to use their country as a base against its citizens. In an interview to the Karachi-based magazine Newsline, Ahmed termed the decision of allowing the US as the "military government`s weakness." "They (military government) do not have roots, they have imposed themselves, they are not of the masses.... A responsible government would will not tolerate its soil being used by people of other countries working against its citizens or against a foreign country," Ahmed, an important member of the opposition Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal said. "We don`t need Americans to establish peace and security in our country, we don`t need their bases. We will not allow our soil to be used by foreign power against Afghanista or any other country," he said. It may be mentioned that the ruling PML-Q and Pakistan Prime Minister Zafarullah Khan Jamali had earlier tried to rope in MMa into the government at the national level. Both MMA and PML-Q share power with each other`s support in the North Western Frontier Province and Balochistan respectively. Asked whether Gen. Pervez Musharraf was left with any choice to offering the US with use of its soil, Ahmed said he needed courage and wisdom. "The problem is there was no institution in the country at that time and he did not consult anyone, not even his army generals," he said. "This was the huge weakness in the regime. We only learnt later that he had adopted this policy," the Jamaat chief said. To a question what would he have done in his place, Ahmed said, " we would have worked through institutions. We are not dictators... We certainly would not have immediately offered our skies, our bases, logistic support and intelligence information or taken the entire burden on ourselves after just one phone call from the US."


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