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Canada, Pakistan to resume officer-training program

Ottawa(Canada),May 20 (ANI): Canada has decided to resume an officer-training program with Pakistan’s military after it was called-off more than a decade ago.

Confirming the report, Canada Defence Minister Peter MacKay said his country would once again start its military-to-military relations with Pakistan which was detached after Islamabad conducted its first nuclear tests in 1998.

“It would be more like an officer-exchange program.So, not so much in terms of us training their officers here, but at a staff college level where you would have seminars and lectures that could occur,” the Globe and Mail quoted Mac Kay, as saying.

Mac Kay is currently in Pakistan to hold talks with his counterpart Ahmad Mukhtar and other top government officials of the country.

When enquired about the international community’s fears that Pakistan is rapidly expanding its nuclear capability, MacKay said it could not be confirmed that Islamabad is expanding nuclear arsenals.

“There was no confirmation that that they were, in fact, adding nuclear weapons to their arsenal,” he said.

MacKay said that during his talks with  Mukhtar and other top Pakistan officials he encouraged Islamabad to move away from nuclear proliferation.

“We did talk briefly about the subject insofar as maintaining that Canada, as a non-proliferation nation, encourages Pakistan, along with other countries, to seize upon this opportunity,” he said.

Incidentally, the discussions between both the countries came days after MacKay termed Pakistan as ‘the most dangerous country in the world.’

“I”m extremely concerned. The instability in Pakistan in my view makes Pakistan the most dangerous country in the world,” Mac Kay had said.

He had also pointed out that the operation against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan would not yield the desired results until the extremists are rooted out from Pakistan, and some greater strides are made in taking on the insurgency in Afghanistan as well.

Canada’s ‘concerns’ are obvious as it also has deployed some 2,800 troops in Afghanistan as part of the US led ‘war on terror’ in the country.  (ANI)

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