- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 12, 2001

'Blunt instrument'
Pakistan Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi has denounced U.S. sanctions against her country as "discriminatory" measures that helped fuel an arms race in South Asia instead of preventing it.
"The issues of sanctions continues to cast a shadow on [the U.S.-Pakistani] relationship," she told the Association of Pakistani Physicians of North America in a recent speech.
"The multilayered, unilateral, discriminatory sanctions against Pakistan constrain the development of our bilateral relations to their full potential."
Miss Lodhi said the sanctions on the U.S. sale of conventional arms, imposed on Pakistan in the 1980s when Washington suspected Pakistan of developing a nuclear weapons capability, left her country no choice but to actually proceed with its nuclear program.
The Clinton administration imposed additional sanctions after Pakistan detonated a nuclear device in 1998, following nuclear weapons tests in rival India. The United States also imposed sanctions on India.
"Pakistan has long argued that sanctions are a blunt instrument that rarely, if ever, enhance the objectives for which they are employed," she told the group of Pakistani-Americans in Chicago last week.
"They are also a dumb instrument. This is illustrated by the history of nuclear proliferation in South Asia.
"One-sided sanctions accelerated proliferation. They did not halt it. Sanctions succeeded in eroding Pakistan's conventional capability, emboldened sense of impunity and obliged Pakistan to seek a nuclear deterrent capability."
Miss Lodhi said sanctions are also counterproductive because they have caused a decline in U.S. investment in Pakistan, damaged the economy and hurt the poor.
The ambassador welcomed the sanctions review initiated by the Bush administration. She said the recent Washington visit by Pakistan Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar was a first step in repairing relations.
"We believe it is time to remove all nuclear-related sanctions on Pakistan," Miss Lodhi said.

Diplomatic tango
Top officials from Britain and its former colony Hong Kong crossed paths several times as they raced around Washington yesterday in what one reporter called a "diplomatic tango."
But Hong Kong Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa and British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, whose country returned Hong Kong to China in 1997, never met in what could have been a "potentially embarrassing photo-op," as the Agence France-Presse news agency put it.
Mr. Tung was visiting Secretary of State Colin L. Powell at the State Department early yesterday morning, as Mr. Straw was at the White House with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice.
Mr. Tung scrambled into his waiting limousine moments before Mr. Straw arrived in a Rolls Royce at the State Department to meet Mr. Powell.
Mr. Tung sped off to the White House for talks with President Bush. He returned to the State Department for lunch with Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, just as Mr. Straw was dining in a separate room with Mr. Powell.
As Mr. Straw and Mr. Powell met briefly with reporters, The Washington Times' diplomatic correspondent Ben Barber surprised them with a question about a late development in Hong Kong.
The island's legislature had just voted to give mainland China the authority to fire the chief executive, in an action denounced by the opposition as an erosion of the democratic principles established under British rule.
Neither Mr. Powell nor Mr. Straw was aware of the development.

Envoys to Balkans
President Bush has selected career diplomats to serve as ambassadors to Bosnia-Herzegovina and Yugoslavia.
The White House yesterday said Mr. Bush picked Clifford Bond for the Bosnian post. He is the acting principal deputy to the special adviser for the new independent states. Mr. Bond previously served as director of the Office of Caucasus and Central Asian Affairs.
Mr. Bush tapped William Montgomery to serve in Yugoslavia. Mr. Montgomery is charge d'affaires at the U.S. Embassy in the Yugoslav capital, Belgrade.
He was ambassador to Croatia from 1997 to 2000 and to Bulgaria from 1993 to 1996.

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