Friday, August 24, 2007
Who Helped the Sharif Family in 2000 - the King of Saudi Arabia or Clinton Administration?
Picture: President Clinton and Rafiq Hariri
Guarantor to keep hands off Pak affairs By Umar Cheema: The News, August 24, 2007
ISLAMABAD: The “unnamed guarantor” of the Sharifs deal has decided not to interfere any more in the internal affairs of Pakistan and would distance himself if any confrontation takes place in future between the Musharraf government and the Sharif brothers, an OIC observer said.
The observer said that the guarantor had conveyed the decision to the Sharif family through an emissary – Saad Hariri, the son of former prime minister of Lebanon and a relative of the Royal family of Saudi Arabia. “The guarantor would not interfere anymore and it has been conveyed to the Sharif brothers,” the OIC observer of Pakistani origin and international mediator, Muhammad Faisal, said this in a telephonic interview with The News from Brussels.
Faisal, who is privy to the ongoing developments, disclosed that Hariri had held a meeting with Nawaz Sharif in London a week ago and conveyed the message of the guarantor to him. The OIC observer is considered very influential and had played an instrumental role in starting negotiations between the government and the Lal Masjid administration. He is also believed to have close links with influential people in the US Congress.
Besides other reasons, the guarantor is under pressure from a global power which is concerned about Nawaz Sharif since the disclosure of Qazi Hussain Ahmad about the Sharifs’ contact with Osama bin Laden in the past, Faisal said.
According to him, the said global power, he did not want to be named, has been secretly investigating whether the Sharifs’ links with bin Laden were still active. Talking about the deal agreement, Faisal said that Nawaz Sharif was surprised to learn as to how the papers were acquired by the Musharraf regime.
A copy of the deal agreement was also handed over to late Rafiq Hariri when the agreement was brokered in 2000, he said. It was only after getting an assurance from Saad Harriri that the Pakistani government would not be provided this agreement, Sharif had filed the petition, he said. But he (Sharif) was shocked to learn when the government produced it before the court, he said.
Although, Minister of State for Information Tariq Azeem denied having any knowledge of it, it has been said that his brother, Shujaat Azeem, who was a pilot of Rafiq Hariri, had allegedly provided the document to the government.
However, sources close to the minister said that the allegation about the role of his brother was baseless. Talking about the Benazir-Musharraf negotiations, he said the US had been pushing the military regime for the purpose and was betting on Ms Bhutto for advancing its agenda in Pakistan.
Faisal, quoting some US officials, said that Ms Bhutto had assured the Bush administration that she would give them access to Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan for investigation, if she could not hand him over to them. He said there were strong reservations in the Muslim world about Ms Bhutto due to her pro-US thinking. He disclosed that even Pakistan’s time-tested friend, China, had reservations about Ms Bhutto.
See: America oversaw Saudis brokering Nawaz’s exile agreement, Daily Times
On the Supreme Court decision see, Supreme Court: Nawaz Sharif Can Return to Pakistan at Pakistaniat.com
at 2:12 PM