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No operation in Balochistan: PM


Gilani says size of federal cabinet will be reduced before next year

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday categorically stated that the federal government had no intention to launch a Swat-like military operation in Balochistan.

“There is no such plan to launch a Swat or Malakand-like operation. That is wrong. It is for the provincial government in Balochistan to take decisions about their province,” Gilani told a group of newspaper editors and media persons at the Prime Minister’s House. The PM said that Interior Minister Senator Rehman Malik, who had also already contradicted the statement, told him that he did not talk about starting any military operation in Balochistan. Gilani said that the federal government was very sensitive about Balochistan, adding the approval of a special Balochistan package was reflective of the government’s positive approach. “We have also invited the nationalist leaders for talks,” the PM said.

Gilani, when asked if he intended to reshuffle his cabinet, responded that according to the constitution after the 18th Amendment, he had to reduce the size of his cabinet before next year. As far as the reshuffle in the cabinet was concerned, he said the matter could be taken up during the meeting of the Pakistan People’s Party’s (PPP) Central Executive Committee (CEC). He said that the government was fully focusing on rehabilitation of the flood affectees and a large amount of donations had been received so far. Gilani said that the international community had pledged $1 billion out of which the federal government had received $300 million. agencies

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