A top military commander of the United States has lauded the ongoing Zarb-e-Azb operation in Pakistan, saying it has reduced militants' ability to use the country’s territory for terrorist activities.
“The military operation being carried out by Pakistan’s Army in the tribal region is critical to defeating terrorism,” Commander-designate US and coalition forces in Afghanistan, Lt Gen John Nicholson, said in a written response to a question by the US Senate Armed Services Committee.
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The improved coordination between Pakistan and Afghanistan along their common border is important to counter-terrorism operations, the US commander was quoted as saying by Radio Pakistan.
Nicholson further said that the US always urged the military forces of both the neighbouring countries to work more closely against the common enemy.
Regarding the Afghan government’s reconciliation process with the Taliban, he said it an Afghan-led effort, which was recently restarted with a quadrilateral meeting with Pakistan, US and China.
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Terming the Afghan reconciliation as the path towards a negotiated settlement, the US army commander said it will bring peace and prosperity to Afghanistan by ending the decades-long conflict.
The Pakistan Army launched Operation Zarb-e-Azb against militants in June, 2014 in the northwestern region. Officials claim that over 3,000 militants have been killed since the launch of the offensive with authorities vowing to intensify operations both in the border regions and across the country.