Ensure no support given to terror groups: US tells Pak
Washington: The US Tuesday asked Pakistan to ensure that terror groups are not supported by elements within the establishment in Islamabad, who continue to follow the old mindset.
This was the message delivered to the Pakistani leadership by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was in Islamabad early this month, State Department spokesman P J
Crowley told reporters.
Crowley's remarks comes in the wake of the stunning leaks of more than 92,000 classified documents that reveal that Pakistan's ISI continues to help the Taliban and al-Qaeda against the United States.
"In Pakistan, (Clinton) she emphasized the need for the Pakistani government to continue its strategic shift against insurgent groups and ensure that insurgent groups are not being supported by elements within Pakistan who continue to follow an old mindset that conflicts with Pakistan's own security interests," Crowley said.
The spokesman said the US believes that Pakistan has undertaken a fundamental strategic shift.
"You know, that said, you know, this is an area of great concern to us. It is something that we've had ongoing, candid, direct conversations, respectful conversations at high
levels, you know, going back months and years," he said.
"The offensives in Swat and South Waziristan are strong indicators that Pakistan has come to recognize that insurgent groups that are, in fact, you know, within the
borders of Pakistan, pose a threat not just to Afghanistan, to the US, but also fundamentally to Pakistan itself," he said.
"So this will continue to take a concerted effort on all sides of the equation by Pakistan, by Afghanistan, supported by the United States and the international community, to make sure that to the extent that there are elements in Pakistan today or in the tribal areas between Pakistan and Afghanistan, where there are safe havens.
"It will take determined effort on both sides of the border to root out those safe havens and, in doing so, reduce the threat that they pose to Pakistan, to Afghanistan, and to
others," Crowley said.
"Whether we are funding a lot of the Pakistani military activity, the reality is that Pakistan is investing its own treasure and spilling its own blood in defense of its
own country," he said.
"The impact on the Pakistani people is profound. hey're the ones that, as these insurgents have turned their attention inside Pakistan, blowing up mosques, blowing up
government buildings, blowing up marketplaces, it is the Pakistani people who are feeling the brunt of this challenge.
And the Pakistani military and the Pakistani government is responding to that," Crowley said.
"I think that's the proof of how Pakistan has fundamentally changed in the past year to two years its approach, you know, to these insurgencies. Are we still concerned about this? Absolutely, we are," he said.