ISI has political wing, admits minister

Pakistan's powerful spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) has always had a political wing, admitted Defence Minister Ahmed Mukhtar.

There has always been a political wing in the ISI and the prime minister and the president will be informed about the agency's policies and requirements by newly-appointed ISI chief Lt. Gen. Zahirul Islam, Mukhtar told reporters in Gujrat city in Punjab province.

Lt. Gen. Islam is to succeed Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha.
The minister said Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani would consider any proposal made by the new ISI chief about ties with the US, reported Dawn.

Pakistan's ties with the US were strained following the killing of Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad May 2 last year and the NATO airstrike on two Pakistan Army checkpost that left two dozen soldiers dead in November.

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