Facing flak in Pakistan, the former President, Pervez Musharraf, on Wednesday backtracked on his statement that the United States military aid meant for the war on terror was diverted to bolster defences against India.

Facing flak in Pakistan, the former President, Pervez Musharraf, on Wednesday backtracked on his statement that the United States military aid meant for the war on terror was diverted to bolster defences against India.

In a statement issued in Philadelphia, the retired General, currently on a lecture tour of the U.S., said Pakistan “never violated any agreement or misutilised U.S. funds.”

“As far as the equipment issued to a military unit is concerned, the equipment moves wherever the unit is deployed,” he said.

“The U.S. at the time was aware of what we were doing,” he was quoted as saying by Dawn News.

The U-turn came three days after Gen. Musharraf admitted in a TV interview that the U.S. military aid provided during his tenure to fight terror was used to strengthen defences against India. He had also said he “did not care” whether the U.S. would be angered by his disclosure.

“No question was asked regarding U.S. funds for fighting the militants in this interview or at any other time,” Gen. Musharraf said in the statement. “I have never said Pakistan violated any agreement.”

The U.S. State Department had said it took Gen. Musharraf’s admission “very seriously,” but refrained from stating whether it would investigate the matter.

Washington has given over $7 billion in aid to Pakistan since the 9/11 attacks in America to fight terrorism.

Gen. Musharraf’s retraction came on a day when Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi accused him of doing disservice to the nation by making remarks on the aid issue.

“If he [Musharraf] has said what has been printed in newspapers, then he has not done any service to Pakistan. If he has said this, he has not strengthened Pakistan’s case,” Mr. Qureshi told reporters in his hometown of Multan.

After Gen. Musharraf’s disclosure, India said his statement did not come as a surprise. “We have for some years now been arguing that the only problem we have with the U.S. military aid to Pakistan is its misuse against us,” Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor said in New Delhi.

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