No doubts on Pak commitment to war on terror: US
* Under-Secretary of Defence Flournoy says Pak-US cooperation against terrorism strengthening by each passing day
ISLAMABAD: US Under-Secretary of Defence Michele Flournoy on Saturday said the US had no doubts on Pakistan’s commitment to the war against terrorism and both countries share the same interests, as the Pakistan Army and its people have rendered invaluable sacrifices in the fight against militancy.
Brushing aside the impression that the US had doubts on Pakistan’s commitment on the war against terrorism, she said, “I don’t see any strains in the Pak-US ties.”
Talking to journalists at the US embassy, she said cooperation between the US and Pakistan in counter-insurgency efforts is touching the highest level and the partnership is going from strength to strength with each passing day.
Flournoy said the US government would provide $1 billion to Pakistan as Counter-Insurgency Support Fund, this year, in its commitment towards helping Pakistan in all spheres of life.
More funding for Pakistan was in the pipeline, as the US government was committed to assist its ally in all fields of life, she added.
“President Obama already has said that the US assistance for Pakistan will be enduring. Over the next 12 months, we will be seeking cooperation on security assistance, especially on provision of security equipment to the armed forces of Pakistan worth $1 billion,” she said.
Flournoy said that the action against terrorists by the Pakistani armed forces was putting pressure on them, which was assisting US operations inside Afghanistan.
“We see tremendous progress in action against the terrorists. We appreciate the operations of Pakistan armed forces against militants which aims at not only securing Pakistani people but also rest of the world,” she added.
to a question on the malicious propaganda launched against Pakistani armed forces by the western media, especially the ISI, Flournoy said the revelations made by WikiLeaks were based on raw inputs and old documents which did not reflect the policy of the US government.
“WikiLeaks report is being treated as a criminal act in the US and the same is being investigated. Moreover, the US government also condemned this report. Let me assure you that there is absolutely no involvement of the US government in this matter,” she said.
Asked whether the US forces were losing the war in Afghanistan, Flournoy refuted such claims.
“No sir, you are badly mistaken. Neither are we losing nor is July 2011 set for the forces to pack their bags. We are not going anywhere. Rather, this is just the beginning of a process to evaluate our strategy in Afghanistan. We remain committed to this region and will stick to Pakistan and Afghanistan,” she added.
Flournoy said the US is completing a surge and all additional troops and resources will be in place by July 2011. Taliban insurgents will be confronted in those areas where no operation had been conducted in the past, she added.
Asked whether al Qaeda was still a threat and whether it could launch another 9/11-scale attack in the future, Flournoy said, “Yes, al Qaeda continues to be a dangerous outfit and I think the threat still remains. However, by working with Pakistan, we have put tremendous pressure over the terror outfit.” app