Gilani
Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani – File Photo

ISLAMABAD: Stability and development in south Asia is not only important for Pakistan but for global security, said Pakistani government Sunday in an apparent rebuke to US comments on the need for reform.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Friday that Pakistan is at risk of major instability which threatens the US-led war effort in neighboring Afghanistan and it should implement reforms and stop fomenting anti-American sentiment.

She spoke as US-Pakistan tensions are high over the killing of two Pakistanis by an American embassy worker. The US says Raymond Davis, was acting in self-defense against robbers and qualifies for diplomatic immunity. But Pakistani authorities have refused to release Davis since the Jan. 27 shooting.

"It is Pakistan's considered view that stability, peace and development in the South Asian region is not only important for Pakistan but has global ramifications," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. The sentiment is one that has been voice previously, but was particularly pointed as it was issued in response to Clinton's speech.

The ministry also called on the international community to support its attempts to work with neighboring India and Afghanistan to promote stability and development.

The standoff over Davis also appears to also be exposing rifts within the Pakistani government, which has been trying to navigate between intense US pressure to release Davis and domestic anger over the deaths.

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