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Pak hires Delhi thorn to lobby US

Islamabad, Oct. 29 (PTI): Pakistan has hired controversial the former US assistant secretary of state for South Asia, Robin Raphael, to push its case on Capitol Hill and with the White House.

Raphael, who retired from the foreign service a few years ago, had caused an uproar in India in the nineties when she questioned the authenticity of the instrument of accession signed by Maharaja Hari Singh that was instrumental in Jammu and Kashmir becoming part of India.

The former diplomat, who was in service during the Clinton years, is a senior vice-president with Cassidy and Associates, which has been hired by Pakistan to lobby its case for an annual fee of $1.2 million.

Raphael has underscored Pakistan’s contributions as an ally for the American counter-terrorism strategy.

“We need to recognise it is not easy what Pakistan is trying to do here in assisting us in the fight against the terrorism in the region,” she told a newspaper.

Raphael said her job would be to make sure “all relevant parties have the facts”.

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