Pakistan’s foreign office has categorically denied all allegations of IEA’s acting defense minister Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob regarding Pakistan’s involvement in a drone strike that killed Al-Qaeda Aiman al Zawahri. In a detailed press release, Pakistan’s foreign ministry rejected all the allegations regarding the Zawahri drone strike saga and reiterated the stance that Pakistan’s soil was not used in this U.S counter-terrorism operation.
“Pakistan has noted, with deep concern, the allegation by Acting Defense Minister of Afghanistan regarding use of Pakistan’s air space in the U.S. counter-terrorism drone operation in Afghanistan. In the absence of any evidence, as acknowledged by the Afghan Minister himself, such conjectural allegations are highly regrettable and defy the norms of responsible diplomatic conduct. Pakistan reaffirms its belief in the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states and condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.” Reads official statement of Pakistan Foreign office.
The official press release further added that, “We urge the Afghan interim authorities to ensure the fulfillment of international commitments made by Afghanistan not to allow the use of its territory for terrorism against any country.”
The Taliban’s acting defense minister Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob on Sunday alleged that Pakistan allowed the USA to use its airspace to conduct drone strike on Al-Qaeda chief.
“The countries radar system was destroyed when the Americans evacuated but according to our information and intelligence-based reports, the drones are entering through Pakistan to Afghanistan and they use Pakistan’s airspace. We ask Pakistan, don’t use your airspace against us,” the IEA acting defense minister said.
Head of Pak Army’s media wing DG ISPR Babar Iftikhar on August 5, had ruled out any possibility and said that, “there was no question of Pakistan soil being used for such a purpose. It is impossible that Pakistan’s soil has been used for such counter-terrorism operation.”
Former Law minister and senior leader of PTI Fawad Chaudry had also raised questions on the Zawahri drone strike saga.
Al-Qaeda leader was killed in a drone strike on July 30 at 9:48 PM when he was standing on the balcony of his safe house in Kabul. The USA had accused the Afghan Taliban government for providing keeping him in “safe house”.