ISLAMABAD: Under mounting international pressure to act against terror groups, Pakistan today rejected a declaration by the BRICS nations, including China, saying there was no “safe haven” for terrorists on its soil.
Leaders from Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations at the recent BRICS Summit in China’s Xiamen and expressed concern over the threat posed by terror groups, including those based in Pakistan.
The 43-page declaration, adopted at the end of the BRICS plenary, expressed “concern” over the security situation in the region and the violence caused by the Taliban, ISIS, al- Qaeda and its affiliates including Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, the Haqqani network, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and Hizb ut-Tahrir.
“We reject the declaration (released by member countries) at the BRICS Summit,” Pakistan’s defence minister Khurram Dastgir said during a meeting of the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Defence.
Dastgir claimed that Pakistan has no “safe haven” for terrorists on its soil.
“Pakistan has taken action against all groups on its soil and only the remnants of some are left,” he was quoted as saying by the Geo TV.
“Forty per cent of Afghanistan is a safe haven for terrorists,” he said, later while talking to the media.
Citing a report by the U.S. Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction, Dastagir said of the 407 Afghan districts, only 57 per cent are under their control.
“The foreign minister will consult regional partners and then proceed to the U.S.,” he said when asked about Pakistan’s plan following U.S. President Donald Trump’s recent comments.