Nawaz Sharif “author of Islamic radicalism” in Afghanistan: Spanta

Saturday, December 4, 2010

KABUL - Former Afghan Foreign Minister Rangin Dadfar Spanta is reported to have described former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as “the author of Islamic radicalism”.

A diplomatic cable released by whistle-blower website WikiLeaks quoted Spanta, as saying: “We know Sharif is bad news. He is the author of Islamic radicalism in our region.”

“Boucher agreed that Sharif could return to lead a movement that is pro-Islam, anti-Musharraf and anti- U.S,” the cable added.

It also noted that Afghan President Hamid Karzai “seemed pleased when Boucher shared that the recent Afghanistan-Pakistan jirga had been portrayed favorably in the U.S. media. Karzai commented that six months would be an ideal time frame after which to host the next jirga in Pakistan.”

“During the meeting with Spanta, the Foreign Minister indicated that while he had been skeptical about the jirga himself, he had considered it a major success in the end,” said the leaked document.

Spanta said Musharraf’s appearance at the end of the jirga was a real high point, and Boucher emphasized that it was Karzai’s urging that changed Musharraf’s mind.

“Boucher clarified that Musharraf’s initial decision not to attend was not a snub to the jirga itself but a cautionary move by Musharraf, who feared the Pakistani Supreme Court would rule to allow former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to return to Pakistan,” the cable said. (ANI)

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