US insists Pakistan keep anti-terror pledges

Obama's comments underscore festering tensions between Washington and Islamabad in wake of unilateral May 2 US raid.


Afp June 23, 2011

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama on Wednesday vowed the United States will "insist" Pakistan fulfill its promises to counter militant sanctuaries on its soil.

"We will work with the Pakistani government to root out the cancer of violent extremism, and we will insist that it keep its commitments," Obama said in a televised speech on troop withdrawal plans for the war in Afghanistan.

Obama's comments underscored festering tensions between Washington and Islamabad in the wake of a unilateral US raid that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in his hideout in Pakistan last month.

In blunt language, Obama made clear he was ready to order more assaults against any safe-havens harboring those who aimed to kill Americans.

"For there should be no doubt that so long as I am president, the United States will never tolerate a safe-haven for those who aim to kill us: they cannot elude us, nor escape the justice they deserve," he said.

Referring to Pakistan, Obama said "no country is more endangered by the presence of violent extremists."

The US president said his government would "continue to press Pakistan to expand its participation in securing a more peaceful future for this war-torn region."

Before his speech, Obama telephoned his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday, officials in Islamabad said.

The Bin Laden raid humiliated the Pakistani military and invited allegations of incompetence and complicity, while Washington has increasingly demanded that Islamabad take decisive action against terror networks in the tribal badlands on the border with Afghanistan.

Apart from the operation by US special forces that killed Bin Laden, Obama has overseen a major CIA drone bombing campaign against al Qaeda and Taliban militants in Pakistan, targeting leaders with unmanned aircraft.

COMMENTS (40)

Sameer | 10 years ago | Reply It's clear to everyone that Pakistan's government lies, stabs people in the back (it's own citizens and allies), and is not trustworthy. No wonder no one wants to do business in or travel to Pakistan. It's sad because Pakistan has so many amazing places and used to have potential before Zia ruined the mindset and wanted to turn everyone into a Wahabi/Salafi.
Faction | 10 years ago | Reply @Mirza: Are you a boxing referee? Prison guard? I've never seen one argument between americans end with deadly results other than on a TV show or in the movies. What the heck are you talking about?
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