Pakistan ready to help probe Rabbani murder
ISLAMABAD (PAN): Pakistan has hit back at the Afghan ministers' allegations of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) involvement in the assassination of ex-president Burhanuddin Rabbani and offered a joint investigation into the murder.
Rabbani's murder was planned in the Quetta by ISI-supported elements, top Afghan officials told the Wolesi Jirga, the lower house, days after the Sept. 20 incident. They said concrete evidence of the spy agency's involvement had been handed to Pakistan.
In response to the accusation, the Foreign Office in Islamabad said on Monday the so-called evidence was in fact a confessional statement by Hamidullah Akhunzada, an Afghan citizen detained. Islamabad is ready for a joint probe, the Foreign Office said.
"Burhanuddin Rabbani was a great friend of Pakistan and was widely respected in this country. He had lived in Pakistan for a long time and had many friends here," the ministry said in a statement. "The concerned authority will work upon this piece of information."
It added the Afghan interior minister had not highlighted the fact that the assassin and his handler were roaming around in Kandahar and Kabul for quite some time. Also, the Afghan the minister did not say that the assassin had spent four days in the guest house of the High Peace Council.
Apparently, the statement said, the assassin was not body-searched before meeting the chief peace negotiator. These facts are also part of the confession handed over to the embassy by Afghan intelligence.
"The Afghan interior minister’s statement is all the more regrettable as Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani had himself offered cooperation in the investigation during his visit to Kabul for condolences with Rabbani’s family and the Afghan people and government."
Instead of making such statements, the ministry said, those in positions of authority should seriously deliberate as to why all those Afghans who are favourably disposed toward peace and Pakistan were systematically being removed from the scene.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.