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PM: Pakistan Not Responsible for Terrorism

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TEHRAN, May 10 (ICANA) – Pakistani Prime Minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani, says it is not his country that should be held accountable for the creation of the al-Qaeda terrorist network.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011 12:22:22 PM
PM: Pakistan Not Responsible for Terrorism

Gilani, in his speech, rejected the allegations that Pakistani officials were aware of the al-Qaeda leader's hideout as absurd, a Press TV correspondent reported.

"Pakistan is not the birthplace of al Qaeda. We did not invite Osama bin Laden to Pakistan, or even to Afghanistan," Gilani said.

Gilani was briefing the lower house of Pakistan's parliament on the recent US raid in the town of Abbottabad.

"Let no-one draw any wrong conclusions. Any attack against Pakistan's strategic assets, whether overt or covert, will find a matching response. Pakistan reserves the right to retaliate with full force. No-one should underestimate the resolve and capability of our nation and armed forces to defend our sacred homeland," he said

"We have strong differences with the United States. The media spin masters have tended to portray a false divide between the state institutions of Pakistan. I would like to most emphatically reject the notion of divide," the premier noted.

However, he said Pakistan is determined not to allow its soil to be used for militancy.

"Pakistan will not relent in this national cause and it is determined not to allow its soil to be used by anyone for terrorism," he added.

The Pakistani premier also told the lawmakers that an investigation has been ordered into the presence of bin Laden in Abbottabad.

Last week, US President Barack Obama announced that the al-Qaeda leader had been killed in a US military attack on a compound near Islamabad.

Washington claims its special forces killed Osama bin Laden in the attack without informing Islamabad. CIA chief Leon Panetta said the US did not inform Pakistani authorities about the raid since they feared Islamabad might disrupt the mission.

The remarks come as pressure mounts on Islamabad to explain how bin Laden managed to hide out in a compound near a military camp for several years.

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