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Media played up Pakistan attacks: Karzai

Media played up Pakistan attacks: Karzai

Oct 16, 2011 - 17:17

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): President Hamid Karzai on Sunday said most media reports about Pakistaninfo-icon's missile strikes into Afghanistaninfo-icon were exaggerated.

His government would take concrete steps in case of any threat to Afghanistan's territorial integrity, the president told a joint news conference with his German counterpart.

Flanked by Christian Wulff, Karzai asked journalists to exercise caution while reporting such incidents and avoid spreading such rumours as caused concerns.

"The issue was discussed in detailed at a meeting on the security situation. In order to avoid damaging relations with neighbours, we decided against taking action on the basis of unconfirmed media reports," he said.

Karzai added: "Initially, we received reports of 100 to 200 rocket strikes and Pakistani soldiers crossing the border, but later on all this turned out to be a lie. Whenever we received confirmed information, the government did its job and took solid steps. 

Earlier in the week, Kunar Governor Sayed Fazlullah Wahidi alleged Pakistani shelling had inflicted financial losses on residents of the area. "If diplomacy fails, Afghan forces would target the areas from where Pakistani troops fire rockets into Afghanistan."

Strengthening regional cooperation, continuity of the democratic system in Afghanistan, the security transition process and peace talks with militants would figure at the second Bonn conference, the president said.   

About the security transfer to Afghan forces, Karzai said: "We, the people of Afghanistan, are responsible for our security. We cannot afford to be a burden forever for the international community."

The visiting president called his country a trusted friend of Afghanistan, saying their friendship and cooperative ties would continue to grow in the future.

Wulff supported the reconciliation effort, saying that the Karzai administration had no viable option other than peace parleys with the Afghan Talibaninfo-icon, who renounced violence, recognised the constitution and snapped ties to Al Qaeda.

At the Istanbul conference, he said, regional countries would be pinned down to promising an end to interference in neighbours' affairs.

"In areas of educationinfo-icon, healthinfo-icon and police training, our assistance to Afghanistan, whose future is very important to Germany, would continue beyond 2014," he said.



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