WASHINGTON: The United States’ anti-terror cooperation with Pakistan is in American long-term security interest and the cooperative efforts between the two countries have yielded results, the State Department said. “What we’re trying to do in Pakistan is to build democratic institutions, to improve Pakistan’s security, to help it face an existential threat from terrorism. And that’s where our assistance is focused,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner said at the daily briefing.
“A strong, stable, peaceful, and prosperous Pakistan is in the interest of the region,” he said in response to a question by an Indian journalist who questioned U.S. assistance for Islamabad. The spokesman said he was not aware of any list of wanted terrorists, which the journalist suggested, was provided to Pakistan during Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent visit to Islamabad.
“Clearly, our counter-terrorism cooperation with Pakistan has yielded results. We’ve talked about the fact that more terrorists have been killed on Pakistani soil over the years than anywhere else in the world and that were apprehended in Pakistani soil over the years. And that is indicative of our strong counter-terrorism cooperation,” Toner said, stressing the importance of anti-terror cooperation.
The spokesman noted that cooperation with Pakistan is in U.S. long-term security interest. Toner argued that the U.S. relationship with Pakistan should not be seen as zero-sum game vis-a-vis Washington’s ties with India.