US continues to press Pakistan on need to fight terrorism: Ashton Carter

"We do press them on that. And I urge them to recognise what we think is true, which is that that is, in fact, the principle threat to the Pakistani state today. It comes from terrorists' organisations within," Defence Secretary said.

PTI| Last Updated: Dec 02, 2015, 03:44 AM IST

Washington: Asserting that the US is "never satisfied" with the level of support and cooperation from Pakistan on counter-terrorism, the top Pentagon leadership on Tuesday told Congress that Washington continues to press Islamabad on the need to fight terrorism.

"We do press them on the need to fight terrorists and to recognise that terrorism is a threat to Pakistan as well as to its neighbours and, by the way, I should add, to US forces in the region," Defence Secretary Ashton Carter told members of the House Armed Services Committee during a Congressional hearing on Iraq and Syria.

"So we are concerned about it," Carter said when Congresswoman Susan Davis asked what are his concerns about Pakistan's commitment to eliminating terrorist organisations.

"We do press them on that. And I urge them to recognise what we think is true, which is that that is, in fact, the principle threat to the Pakistani state today. It comes from terrorists' organisations within," Defence Secretary said.

"Congresswoman Davis, we are never satisfied with the level of cooperation and support that we have from Pakistan. But we do have open lines of communication," General Joseph Dunford, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

"What I do believe is that over the past 18 to 24 months in particular, the Pakistanis realise that violent extremism presents an existential threat to the state of Pakistan.

"I think as a result the level of cooperation has improved over the past year and a half or two years. It is not today, in my assessment, what it needs to be in order for us to be effective and we'll continue to work with our Pakistani partners to make sure that it gets better," Dunford said.