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Pakistan army chief Kayani cancels UK visit

LONDON —

Pakistan’s powerful army chief has canceled a Monday
visit to Britain as U.S. outrage grows over allegations that Pakistani
spies helped insurgents attack American targets in Afghanistan.

Britain’s
Ministry of Defense said Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, who was expected to
meet privately with U.K. Defense Minister Liam Fox, had canceled. It
declined to speculate on why the visit was scrapped.
A Pakistani official said Kayani was staying in Pakistan to hold
talks on the crisis sparked by the U.S. accusations against Pakistan’s
military-run Inter-Services Intelligence spy agency. The official spoke
on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.
Last
week, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen,
accused the ISI of having backed an Afghan insurgent group in the
planning and execution of a Sept. 13 assault on the U.S. Embassy in
Afghanistan as well as a truck bomb that wounded 77 American soldiers
days earlier.
Kayani, widely considered the most powerful man in Pakistan, has dismissed the allegations as baseless.
But
a Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee has said the U.S.
should consider military action as an option against Pakistan if it
continues to support terrorist attacks against Americans in Afghanistan.

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