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United States committed to partnership with Pakistan: Anne Patterson PDF Print E-mail
ISLAMABAD, Feb 15 (APP): United States Ambassador Anne Patterson said United States is committed to a partnership with Pakistan that is built on a foundation of mutual interest, respect and trust. Addressing participants of the National Defence Course at the National Defence University here, she said the U.S and Pakistan enjoy close military to military cooperation today than we have had in many years.
She said the cooperation has been the result of a consultative process that has brought so many of their military and civilian leaders here over the past few months.
“National Security Adviser Jim Jones was here this week and Admiral Mike Mullen, our Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff was here last month. Our leading combatant commanders, General David Petraeus and General Stanley McChrystal have been regular visitors here too, as have a number of senior Administration officials and Members of Congress.”
“I attend many of the meetings conducted by our senior military and political leaders with your government and with General Kayani and want to assure you that we have had genuine and thoughtful exchanges of ideas and close consultations on U.S. policy in Afghanistan,” she added.
She said President Obama is genuinely interested in Pakistan and its welfare as he believes the U.S. did not do enough in recent years to help Pakistan fight extremism and terrorism, build its economy and develop a democratic society. 
She said the actions President Obama has taken during the first year of his Presidency reflect his belief that the United States should support Pakistan in all of these areas.
In his December 1 policy speech on the way forward in Afghanistan and Pakistan, President Obama said: “In the past, we too often defined our relationship with Pakistan narrowly. Those days are over.”
The Pakistani people must know America will remain a strong supporter of Pakistan’s security and prosperity long after the guns have fallen silent, so that the great potential of its people can be unleashed.”
She said, “as part of their shared vision of the next steps in the campaign against extremism and militancy, we are coordinating our activities and movements as we have never done before.” 
The Ambassador said she personally participated in many meetings chaired by President Obama in which he has repeatedly spoken of his concern for Pakistan’s security and economic development.  The President’s views are accurately reflected in the broad support for Pakistan throughout his Administration and in the Congress.
She said the principles that President Obama has outlined for our way forward are clear:  the U.S. will continue to attack, disrupt and ultimately defeat al-Qaeda and its extremist allies; and the U.S will support Pakistan in its efforts to build a secure, stable, successful state at peace with its neighbors, democratic and economically prosperous.
For the United States, a major foreign policy initiative needs support from Congress and that support is usually accompanied by assistance funds for the State Department, USAID, the Defense Department or other U.S. government agencies, Patterson informed.
Working closely with senior members of the Congress, President Obama endorsed a large assistance package to help Pakistan strengthen its energy, education, health, and agricultural sectors.
The Enhanced Partnership with Pakistan Act, also known as the Kerry-Lugar-Berman Bill, authorizes $1.5 billion per year for five years - $7.5 billion total - for civilian assistance to Pakistan, beyond the over $1 billion per year provided for military assistance in separate legislation and authorizations.
She said Senator John Kerry has taken a very strong interest in Pakistan’s welfare and has been a regular visitor here we expect him again next week—because in his congressional oversight role, the Senator wants to see that the initiative bearing his name will result in tangible progress for the Pakistani people.
“Making this commitment to Pakistan while the U.S. is still recovering from the effects of the global recession reflects the strength of our vision. Yet we have made this commitment, because we see the success of Pakistan, its economy, its civil society and its democratic institutions as important for ourselves, for this region and for the world.”
In 2009, she said new thinking crystallized among Pakistan’s political and military leadership. 
She recalled that the Taliban takeover of Swat was a wakeup call for all of them. 
“Their edicts restricting personal freedoms, imposing summary justice and banning girl’s education made it very clear to people here and around the world what kind of country the Taliban believe Pakistan should become.”
Pakistan’s successful military campaign to reestablish the writ of government in Swat and, later in South Waziristan enjoyed enormous popular support throughout the country, she said adding, “The Taliban have been no match for your troops, but they have nevertheless managed to kill many soldiers.  Moreover, they have sent suicide bombers to major cities to kill and maim with a clear goal in mind to promote fear and insecurity among the people of Pakistan.”
She said the action of Taliban have succeeded only in strengthening the will of Pakistan’s military and civilian leadership.
She mentioned public remarks of the Prime Minister to a group of parliamentarians on Tuesday in which he sent a message that the government will no longer tolerate challenges to its authority by terrorists. 
 

     

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