Mass Protests Announced in Pakistan Over NATO Border Supplies

Pakistan FM Denies 'Secret Deal' With US on Supply Route

by Jason Ditz, July 04, 2012

Yesterday’s announcement that Pakistan’s government intends to follow through on reopening the border to occupied Afghanistan is not sitting well with large numbers of Pakistani factions, with the Defa-e Pakistan Council (DPC) announcing a “black day” and a weekend protest march against the capital, inviting several religious and political blocs to join in.

The DPC’s leadership announced the protest marches after consultations with the Jamiat-e Ulama-e Islam (JUI), a key religious political party, and issued a statement saying that it was religiously forbidden to allow Pakistani soil to be used to ship supplies to kill Muslims in another country.

Secular political blocs are complaining primarily that the Pakistani government bypassed parliament’s demands for both an apology and an end to the drone strikes. Foreign Minister Hina Khar denied that parliament’s demands had been deviated from, and likewise rejected claims of a “secret deal” with the Obama Administration.

Despite Khar’s comments, there have been no indications that the US intends to stop drone strikes against Pakistan, and indeed the Obama Administration has repeatedly vowed to continue the strikes at all costs. The supply line is expected to reopen on Thursday.

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