TEHRAN: President Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday called for a regional approach to deal with the menace of terrorism and militancy, while taking into account the interests, capacity and aspirations of sovereign states and their peoples. “A regional approach has to take into account the interest, the capacity and the aspirations of sovereign states and their people and has to build solid stakes in lasting peace”, President Zardari said while addressing the 10th ECO Summit being held here in the Iranian capital. The President said as terrorism does not have any faith and frontiers, it was important to focus on addressing and eliminating its root causes which include injustice, deprivation and dispossession. “Terrorism knows neither faith, nor frontiers. It breeds on injustice, deprivation and dispossession. Terrorism has roots across the region and its root causes have to be addressed”, he stressed.
President Zardari said the democratic government in Pakistan has made a promising beginning with Afghanistan and the two brotherly countries are making steady progress in building a relationship of deeper trust and understanding. “We have revived the Jirga process and set the directions of future cooperation”, he remarked.
The President said the ECO family bears a special responsibility towards Afghanistan, adding, Pakistan has been at the forefront of ECO’s efforts for the reconstruction of this brotherly country. “Let us give these efforts a strong impetus”, President
Zardari said and announced that Pakistan will shortly be remitting an additional US $ one million to the ECO fund for Afghanistan. President Zardari said with important strides being made across the world, the ECO has yet to realize its potential to the fullest measure. “We have to fashion ECO to the specifications of our region and the demands of our times”, he said.
The President in this respect made some vital proposals which include the creation of ECO free trade area, development of an ECO, Energy Ring of pipelines and electricity grids, economic partnership, greater connectivity through road, rail, air and sea links and forging of closer links with adjoining regions particularly SCO and SAARC.-SANA