Rawalpindi: A US congressional delegation comprising four US Senators, headed by Robert Patrick Casey, a senior Senator from Pennsylvania, called on the Defence Minister, Ch. Ahmad Mukhtar at Ministry of Defence today. After extending a warm welcome to the US delegation, the Defence Minister highlighted significant role of Pakistan and its armed forces in war on terror. He re-iterated that ongoing war will be taken to its logical conclusion, for which international support in military and monetary terms to Pakistan will help create desired effects.
The Minister further briefed the US delegation about the economic loss Pakistan has suffered since start of military operations post 9/11. The scale of casualties incurred on military forces as well as civilians was amply briefed to the US team, to prove the fact about the level of commitment and sincerity Pakistan has demonstrated and will continue to apply, until peace and normalcy prevails in Afghanistan and adjoining tribal areas. Efforts on part of Govt in rehabilitation of IDPs of Swat and Mingora were also discussed. Govt’s recent initiatives to improve relations with India and fostering working relationship with all neighbouring countries aimed at regional stability were also spelt out. The Defence Minister emphasized on the visiting Senators to convince US Govt on immediate release of collation support fund (CSF) as well as military equipment committed for Pakistan armed forces to sustain the ongoing tempo and scope of military operations.
US delegation on its part praised the contributions of Pakistan’s Govt. and its military in supporting international community in Afghanistan. Joint working through mutual respect and understanding can bridge the differences which have occurred post Raymond Davis and OBL raid. US Senators requested the Defence Minister to use his office in seeking early negotiations and solutions to the unresolved issues between the Pakistani and US administrations. Need for intelligence building, tight control / check on IEDs and operations against all terrorist networks in tribal areas were also underlined by the visiting delegation.
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