The Pakistan Army has expressed its reservations over the civilian government’s move to grant Most Favoured Nation-status to India and conveyed its concern to the administration at the highest level,BBC Urdu reported today.
A senior official privy to the army’s interaction with the government on the issue told BBC that military leaders had said the new contacts with India should be viewed in the context of the situation in Afghanistan.
“Military officials are of the opinion that MFN-status for India is not in line with Pakistan’s security policy in Afghanistan,” the official was quoted as saying.
Military officials had advised the political leadership not to act in haste in trade relations with India,BBC quoted its sources as saying.
The powerful military establishment,which guides Islamabad’s defence and foreign affairs,believes Pakistan and India would be in competition for trading opportunities after the US withdraws its troops from Afghanistan,the report said.
Pakistan’s cabinet recently approved a proposal to normalise trade relations with India.
Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and other leaders have said the move will ultimately lead to the giving of MFN-status to India.
Hardline religious and extremist groups,including the Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamaat-ud-Dawah,have opposed the move to give MFN-status to India and organised protests on the issue.