Islamabad: Pakistan`s friendship with the
US has been transformed into a comprehensive partnership as
democracy has taken roots in the country, Prime Minister
Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Monday.
Gilani made the remarks while addressing a select
gathering at a farewell lunch he hosted in honour of outgoing
US Ambassador Anne Patterson at the Prime Minister’s House
He said democracy has taken roots in Pakistan as is
"vividly demonstrated by the vibrancy of our parliament and
the debates in the media".
The country has confronted boldly the challenges of
terrorism and extremism, he added.
Gilani noted with satisfaction that during Patterson`s
tenure, Pakistan`s friendship with the United States has been
transformed into a comprehensive partnership.
At the same time, the resilience of the Pakistani
people and institutions "has been tested in these odd hours
and this has shown the steadfast resolve and inherent strength
of the Pakistani nation".
Patterson, who played a key behind-the-scenes role in
resolving the political turmoil that marked the end of former
military ruler Pervez Musharraf`s regime, said she was pleased
to see the transformation of bilateral relations into a long
term strategic partnership that is beneficial for both
She recalled the transition that marked the return of
democracy in Pakistan and described it as significant for the
She appreciated Gilani`s reconciliatory role in
parliament to resolve major national issues.
Patterson appreciated Pakistan`s contributions in the
war against terror and said the sacrifices made by the people
and the armed forces are recognized throughout the world.