Nov 12 - 18, 2001
Four vital objectives achieved, says CE
President Gen Pervez Musharraf said on Wednesday
that his government's principled support to the international effort
for combating terrorism has helped Pakistan achieve four major
important national objectives including assuring integrity and
security of Pakistan.
Presiding over the cabinet meeting, he listed these
objectives as integrity and security of Pakistan, safety of its
strategic assets, avoiding any damage to the Kashmir cause and
rehabilitation of the national economy. The meeting was also attended
by the provincial governors.
Gen Musharraf emphasized that the diplomatic and
economic gains accruing from Pakistan's principled policy far
outweighed the material losses it was suffering during the current
crisis in the region.
According to informed sources, the President said
Pakistan has not gone for any quid pro quo or sought any deal for
supporting the Americans to combat terrorism. He said he was happy to
note that there was a growing realisation that Pakistan should be
fully compensated through new access to markets as well as generous
bilateral and multilateral support.
The US government has lifted the remaining
sanctions against Pakistan, with Congress allowing President Bush to
extend any financial support to Pakistan. There were reports that US
was considering to offer one billion dollar to Pakistan. Washington
and its coalition partners have already committed $800 million cash
grant beside $600 million for Afghan refugees.
Rumsfeld plans to visit Pakistan
Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is expected to
visit Pakistan, India, Russia and some Central Asian states next week.
On Tuesday, Mr Rumsfeld for the first time publicly
acknowledged the presence of American ground troops in Afghanistan
amidst reports from Pakistani sources of defections in the Taliban
He said a "modest number" of the US
ground troops were in Afghanistan to provide logistics and liaison
The troops, Mr Rumsfeld said, were in the north
helping the anti-Taliban forces, and other ground troops had gone in
and come out of southern Afghanistan.
Thar coal project
Pakistan on Tuesday asked a Chinese company to
carry out, as soon as possible, the feasibility study of Thar coal
project so that the mega project could be implemented on a fast track
Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural
Resources Usman Aminuddin and a three-member visiting delegation of
Shenhua Group of China held a meeting and discussed details of the
Ma Jun, the general manager of Shenhua, leading the
delegation, briefed the minister about the development activities of
the group in China.
N-assets under foolproof controls
Pakistan on Thursday reassured the international
community that its nuclear assets were under foolproof custodial
controls, and brushed aside apprehensions about these falling into the
hands of extremists.
"Dedicated formations of specially equipped
forces have been deployed for ensuring the security of Pakistan
nuclear installations and assets," Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar
said in a statement read out at the daily briefing of the Foreign
Flood feared as bombing cripples Afghan dam
US forces on Thursday crippled Afghanistan's
biggest hydroelectric complex after two days of their heaviest air
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan joined a chorus of
world leaders seeking a swift end to the US-led military action, but
appeals for a pause in hostilities during Ramazan brought mixed
responses — including a strong rejection by Afghan opposition forces
fighting the Taliban.
UN not working on new setup
The UN secretary-general's special representative
for Afghanistan, Lakhdar Brahimi, on Thursday said that the United
Nations has not received a mandate to form government in Afghanistan
nor he was aware of the Taliban's role in any future broad-based
Answering questions at a crowded news conference,
the UN special representative said, "I am not involved in
installing a government anywhere."
He said the UN is not constructing a government in
Afghanistan, but under a new added mandate given by the international
community, the world body is entrusted with the task of providing
humanitarian assistance and preparing for the reconstruction of
Aid package finalization during CE's NY visit
An economic aid package being worked out by the
United States for Pakistan may be given final shape during General
Pervez Musharraf's meeting with President George Bush in New York on
The US has already announced grants so far worth
over $600 million.
Progress of the military campaign in Afghanistan
and regional security issues will be among the other subjects
dominating the talks.
A formal White House announcement on the Musharraf
visit also makes it a point to say that the October 2002 elections in
Pakistan will be part of the talks' agenda.
Businessmen optimistic about economy
A group of business executives from multinationals
and local companies expressed their determination on Wednesday to
convert the present crisis situation into opportunities for Pakistan.
"Pakistan has resiliently met the most tough
time of its history when there were more than 150 sanctions imposed by
the US and other countries", Qazi Sajid, president, Pakistan
Chapter of International Personnel Management Association (IPMA), said
in his opening remarks of the meeting on Wednesday.
Germany revives economic assistance
Germany agreed on Sunday to provide 150 million
Deutschmark(DM) financial support to Pakistan that includes DM 50
million economic aid and DM 100 million debt- equity swap for two
Besides this, DM 100 million will be made available
through Hermez Bank as supplier's credit. Germany will also assist
Pakistan in getting financial support and debt relief from
multilateral and bilateral forums. Germany has also declared Pakistan
"the priority-partner country", said Finance Minister
Dutch help for refugees assured
The visiting Dutch Prime Minister, Wim Kok, has
said that his country would extend all possible help and assistance to
the displaced Afghan families, besides taking active part in
reconstruction of the war-ravaged country.
During his visit to the Kacha Ghari refugee camp on
Sunday, the Dutch premier asked the refugees to demonstrate tolerance
and patience over the US strikes, as, he said, it would follow a
comprehensive political process and humanitarian assistance to help
reconstruct the war-torn country.