David Cameron to try tact in dealing with Pakistan
David Cameron will try to assuage Pakistani fury over remarks linking the country with terrorism after its president arrives for a visit to Britain.
The Prime Minister will not apologise for accusing elements within the Pakistani state of “looking both ways” on terrorism, but will absolve its government of blame for promoting extremism.
He is keen to lower the diplomatic temperature after his comments led to his effigy being burned in Islamabad and the boycott by Pakistani intelligence officials of a counter-terrorism summit in Britain. President Asif Ali Zardari has defied domestic pressure to cancel his five-day visit to Britain in which he will discuss issues ranging from export tariffs to terrorism. He is expected to make clear his displeasure over his host's remarks, particularly as they were delivered by Mr Cameron during a visit to its arch-rival India.
The Prime Minister's aides said he did not regret his comments, despite the fury they provoked in Islamabad.