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Pakistan wants good ties with US, says Gilani


London : Despite the growing strains sparked by Osama bin Laden’s killing, Pakistan wants good ties with the US, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has said.

Gilani told BBC: “We want a good relationship with the United States and it has nothing to do with our relationship with China.

“We have excellent relations with China. Therefore, if you have something in mind that … we are tilting towards China, it is not that. We had excellent relations with Beijing for the last 60 years.”

The Associated Press of Pakistan, which put out excerpts from Gilani’s interview, also quoted him as saying that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appreciated Pakistan’s role in the war on terror.

But Gilani, who is visiting Britain, admitted that Islamabad was still disappointed that the US did not share its intention to mount a raid on Osama’s hideout in Pakistan and kill him.

“That was the thing we really did not like it,” he said.

US commandos shot dead Osmaa in Abbottabad city May 2 without the knowledge of Islamabad or its military, an event that caused revulsion in Pakistan.

Gilani said that Pakistan had been sharing intelligence about militants with the US and that most of the wanted people of Al Qaeda were traced by the Pakistani intelligence.

“We helped them and therefore there was no reason not to share (information) with us,” he added.

Asked if his government did not know about CIA operations in Pakistan, Gilani said: “There is nothing which we don’t know. We know everything.”

But in the same breath he added that Pakistan was not aware that Osama was living in Abbottabad — for years.