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Home > News > PTI

Denied N-deal, Pak ready to set up nuke parks

November 11, 2006 14:44 IST
Last Updated: November 11, 2006 15:47 IST

Even as it was trying to secure a deal on the lines of the Indo-US nuclear agreement from the United States, Pakistan has said it was ready to establish nuclear parks in the country from where foreign companies could operate independently.

On the Indo-US nuclear deal, 'our position has been to ask the US and the International Community for a similar deal with Pakistan,' Foreign Minister Khursheed M Kasuri said in an interview to PTV on Friday.

'Pakistan was a fast growing economy whose needs for energy were growing by the day. We foresee our own reserves to be insufficient to meet our energy demands in future if we were to maintain our current economic growth which was one of the highest in the world.

'Hence it was of utmost importance to Pakistan to have access to nuclear energy. Pakistan was prepared to establish nuclear parks in the country where the foreign companies could operate independently,' Kasuri said.

On the question of future of Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline, Kasuri said Pakistan had not abandoned the project and was currently discussing the price structure with Tehran.

Pakistan was also looking at the import of gas from Turkmenistan and other countries in this regard.

On Democrats capturing power in US, he said the polls would not have any impact on Pak-US relations as Islamabad enjoyed 'bipartisan' support and had a 'special relationship' with Washington.

Pakistan was following a policy of constant engagement with important countries. It was, therefore, immaterial who controlled the US Congress, Kasuri said.

'The policy of both the parties, the Republicans and Democrats, was based on the 9/11 Commission Report, which stressed the centrality and importance of Pakistan for regional and international peace and security,' he added.

The new Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi and other leaders of Democratic Party during their election campaign had stressed the necessity of faithfully implementing the 9/11 Commission's recommendations.

'This ensured continuing support to Pakistan,' he said.

Kasuri said Pakistan Congressional Caucus in the US was bipartisan and had around 70 members currently in its ranks and the membership was increasing in view of the importance of Pakistan.

Due to its strategic location and the vital role it played in regional peace and security, Pakistan remained an important country not just for the US but also for the EU, China, Russia, Japan, the Islamic World as well as other countries of the world, he added.

On the recent visit of the US Assistance Secretary of State Richard Boucher, Kasuri denied reports that he carried a secret message to Pakistan.

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