"I had said that Mr Asfandyar Wali had accepted
dollars from the United States, but I had no proof. I take my words back
and express my sorrow over any offence caused to ANP leaders and workers"-
Altaf Hussain

KARACHI: The founder and leader of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Altaf
Hussain, has expressed regret over his allegation that Central President of
Awami National Party Asfandyar Wali Khan accepted dollars from the United
States.

Addressing Asfandyar Wali Khan, he said, "I had said that Mr Asfandyar Wali had
accepted dollars from the United States, but I had no proof. I take my words
back and express my sorrow over any offence caused to ANP leaders and workers. I
want to end hostilities because the peace and stability needed by Pakistan at
this juncture can be well appreciated by those who are making sacrifices for the
security and existence of the country."

Meanwhile, President Asfandyar Wali Khan has welcomed the decision of the MQM
chief Altaf Hussain to retract his words against the party leadership in a
recent press talk from the United Kingdom. A press release from the Bacha Khan
Markaz here on Monday said the ANP leader considered scaling down political
confrontation as a way forward for peace in Karachi and strengthening democracy
in the country.

Altaf Hussain, it may be added, had alleged that Asfandyar Wali received
millions of dollars from the US. However, he has now said he had no evidence to
back up his claim and that leaders with a political mindset would never resort
to a media trial of each other. He emphasised that the ANP believed in tolerance
and pluralism.

In response, Central President has said his party condemned any partial
treatment meted out to citizens in the name of colour, caste, creed, ethnicity,
religion or belief. He said internal and external challenges the country was
faced with required mutual accommodation among all political parties since
collective wisdom was essential to steer the country out of hard times.

Asfandyar Wali said unity among political workers across the board must be the
order of the day to make Pakistan a strong and democratic country.