Mian Azhar criticizes Wana action

Published March 22, 2004

LAHORE, March 21: The ongoing Wana operation has increased the despondency and uncertainty in the country, former PML-Q president Mian Muhammad Azhar said on Sunday, urging the rulers not to do anything against the national security and interests.

In a press statement here, he said the government owed an explanation to the nation why all tribesmen were being penalized and why the parliament had not been taken into confidence if the Wana operation was unavoidable.

Mian Azhar alleged that the government had lost its writ and people had been left to the mercy of circumstances. While unemployment, price hike and killings were at their peak, for the rulers the situation was all right, he regretted. He said he and his colleagues would soon declare their future course of action.

SAAD: PML-N leader Khwaja Saad Rafiq has disputed as misleading the government's claim that the United States is not involved in the Wana operation.

In a statement here, he said a brigadier's statement that three tribesmen were injured as a result of accidental firing by US choppers had exposed the government's lies in this regard.

Saad said the nation would like to know where and when the people being branded as terrorists had involved themselves in terrorist activities. He said those arrested during the operation were friends of Pakistan, opposed only to the Bush doctrine, not the American citizens.

He said these people had not left their houses for the fear of being arrested and turned over to the US. These people had preferred martyrdom to detention in Guantanamo cells.

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