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Pakistan Promises 'Full Cooperation' in US Fight Against Terrorism - 2001-09-13


Pakistan is promising the United States full cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

Pakistan's military leader, General Pervez Musharraf, condemned the attacks on New York and Washington, calling them "barbaric acts of terrorism." He says a concerted international effort is needed to fight terror in all its forms and manifestations.

"The carnage in New York and Washington has raised this struggle to a new level," General Musharraf said. " Pakistan has been extending cooperation to international efforts to combat terrorism in the past, and will continue to do so in the future. I wish to assure President Bush and the U.S. government of our unstinted cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

A presidential spokesman, Rashid Qureshi, later told a news conference that U.S. officials have asked Pakistan for support, but no specific demand has been made.

"There needs to be a specific concern or requirement conveyed before a decision can be made," he explained. " There has been no specific demand. In the past, Pakistan has conveyed to the United States that the best way to deal with the Afghans is to engage with them. That's been Pakistan's policy."

Pakistan has come under international pressure for its support of the ruling Taleban movement in neighboring Afghanistan, which is sheltering Saudi-born militant Osama bin Laden, reported to be a prime suspect in Tuesday's attacks on New York and Washington. Pakistan is the only country that has an embassy in Kabul. Washington has been seeking fullest cooperation from Pakistan in gathering information about Tuesday's attacks.

New U.S. ambassador to Pakistan Wendy Chamberlin met with General Musharraf. She told reporters the general pledged full cooperation, and said his country is with the United States.

Pakistan's Foreign Ministry officials say Secretary of State Colin Powell has also telephoned General Musharraf to discuss Tuesday's attacks. On Wednesday, General Musharraf called for Pakistanis in the United States to provide all aid possible, including giving blood, to victims of the attacks.

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