US against extra-constitutional changes in Pakistan

WASHINGTON: The United States on Wednesday said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is constitutionally elected head of the government of Pakistan, with the State Department also stating that Washington does not support any extra constitutional changes to the democratic system.

“We support the constitutional and electoral process in Pakistan, which produced the Prime Minister of Nawaz Sharif. That was the process they followed, and the election they had, we are focused on working with Pakistan”, State Department Deputy spokesperson Marie Harf said at the daily briefing.

“We do not support any extra-constitutional changes to that democratic system or people attempting to impose,” that she added.

“Nawaz Sharif was elected and he is the prime minister. There is a government that was elected (and is) in place”, Harf noted in reply to a question.

The spokesperson checked an Indian journalist against portraying the marches situation in dire negative terms when he suggested that the situation in Pakistan was grave. “We caution you from using terms like grave”, she said.

“While we call on all sides to refrain from violence we are monitoring the situation. We will continue to work with the Pakistanis. I would caution you from assuming sort of where this goes from here. We think there is a protest that is peaceful. We know there is a lot of space for political dialogue”, the spokesperson noted.

Whereas, the United States offered a total $30 million Wednesday in return for information on key leaders of the feared Haqqani militant network, blamed for numerous bloody attacks in Afghanistan.

“The Department has authorized rewards of up to $5 million each for information leading to the location of Aziz Haqqani, Khalil al-Rahman Haqqani, Yahya Haqqani, and Abdul Rauf Zakir,” the State Department said in a statement.

It also increased its previous reward offer of up to $5 million for information on the group´s leader, Sirajuddin Haqqani, to up to $10 million.

The State Department added: “The group is allied with Al-Qaeda and the Afghan Taliban and cooperates with other terrorist organizations in the region.”