Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan reacted to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's remark after the Afghanistan pullout and called the latter's comment ignorant. In an interview with CNN, Khan addressed the Taliban takeover crisis, its impact on Pakistan and this country's deteriorating ties with the US, reported ANI.
"I have never heard such ignorance," Khan told CNN while responding to Blinken's comments on Pakistan's role in the US' 20 year-long Afghan war.
For the unversed, the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday said that the US would re-evaluate its relations with Pakistan following the troop withdrawal from Afghanistan. Blinked made the comments during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing that Pakistan has a "multiplicity of interests some that are in conflict with ours."
Calling such remarks ignorant, Khan said thousands of Pakistanis died in terrorist attacks by the 'militant groups' because his country sided with the US during their Afghan war after the 9/11 attacks.
"Pakistan became a US ally after 9/11. The suffering this country went through with at one point there were 50 militant groups attacking our government... on top of it, they must also know there were 480 drone attacks by the US in Pakistan," Khan added in response as per ANI.
On the airstrikes by the US in Pakistan, Khan said that they are the first country to attack their own ally.
The prime minister also addressed the United States' continuous claim that Pakistan harbours and supports terrorist groups and activities.
What are these safe havens?" Khan asked. "The area of Pakistan along the border of Afghanistan had the heaviest surveillance by the United States drones ... surely they would have known if there were any safe havens?" Khan said.
He then added that Pakistan cannot destroy itself to fight the battles of other countries.
Meanwhile, on the Taliban crisis, Khan noted that the best way forward for peace and stability in the war-torn region is to engage with the Taliban and "incentivise" them on issues such as women's rights and inclusive government.
On August 15, the Taliban took over the control of Afghanistan as the US pulled out its troops from the region, ending a 20-year-long war on terror after the 9/11 Twin Tower attacks.