Faced with enormous accusations, domestic anger and harsh criticism as a result of the Osama bin Laden episode, Pakistan has asked the Iranâ€™s interior minister to cancel his trip to Islamabad, The Express Tribune has learnt.
Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najar was due to arrive in Islamabad next week along with an official delegation, including his deputy minister, to discuss Pakistanâ€™s alleged support to Balochistan-based Jundullah. Najar had a lengthy agenda that he was keen to discuss with top Pakistani leaders, including Interior Minister Rehman Malik. The matter of Pakistanâ€™s alleged support to Jundullah had also come under discussion when Malik met his Iranian counterpart in Tehran last month.
Recently, relations between the two countries soured over a variety of issues ranging from Pakistanâ€™s support for Manamaâ€™s Al Khalifa regime and decision to send manpower for Bahranian armed forces and police as one of the core issues.
Pakistan on the other hand is seriously aggrieved by Iranâ€™s interference in Islamabadâ€™s internal affairs, particularly its alleged role in instigating sectarian clashes in the Kurram Agency. Iranâ€™s ambassador in Islamabad Mashaâ€™allah Shakeri was summoned by the ministry of foreign affairs last month to lodge a protest over Tehranâ€™s unfriendly behaviour with Pakistani diplomats in Iran.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 9th, 2011.