Pakistan: Nawaz rejects NSC statement, terms it ‘painful, regrettable’

Pakistan: Nawaz rejects NSC statement, terms it ‘painful, regrettable’

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ISLAMABAD: Ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday, sticking by his remarks regarding the Mumbai attacks made during an exclusive interview to Dawn, rejected the National Security Committee (NSC)’s statement on the matter and termed it “painful and regrettable”.

In the interview on Saturday, Nawaz had said: “Militant organisations are active. Call them non-state actors, should we allow them to cross the border and kill 150 people in Mumbai? Explain it to me. Why can’t we complete the trial?”

After yesterday’s NSC meeting, that was called a day after Nawaz’s interview was published, top civil-military officials rejected and denounced the “recent statement in the context of Mumbai attacks”, claiming that it could have been spurred either by “misconceptions or grievances”.

In an informal discussion with reporters at the accountability court today, the former prime minister ─ who has come under fire for his remarks ─ said that the NSC statement was “not based on facts”.

He reiterated his demand for the formation of a national commission to decide who committed treason and said that it would allow all facts to become clear.

Following Nawaz’s interview, some elements, according to the former premier, have described him as a traitor.

“Even at that time, the same things ─ getting our house in order ─ were being discussed in an NSC meeting,” he pointed out, referring to a meeting in which, Dawn had reported, the civilian government had informed the military leadership of Pakistan’s growing international isolation and sought consensus on several key actions by the state.

“At that time, this matter was turned into ‘Dawn leaks’,” he said.

“We should find out who laid the foundation of terrorism in the country,” he asserted.

“Pakistan is not becoming isolated, it is already isolated. Tell me which country stands with us, is there any?” he asked.

Several senators on both sides of the aisle on Monday had fired a broadside at Nawaz for his recent statement about the Mumbai attacks, with some going as far as demanding that the PML-N supremo be tried for high treason; that his name be placed on the Exit Control List, and a thorough investigation be undertaken to determine the reasons behind the statement made by a thrice-elected prime

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