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APEC Expected to Issue Statement on Terrorism - 2001-10-17


U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell is in Shanghai to attend the annual summit of the 21 nation Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. He arrived Wednesday from South Asia, where he met with Pakistani and Indian leaders to talk about the anti-terrorism campaign. Mr. Powell expects the summit to issue a strong statement on terrorism this weekend.

Secretary of State Powell says he expects the final declaration will reflect the cohesion of the international anti-terrorism coalition, in his words, standing together in this crisis.

Mr. Powell says the 21 APEC members will also look at what they can contribute to the anti-terrorism campaign. The draft statement is reported to outline some steps, including measures to improve airport security and crackdown on money laundering.

The Secretary of State says the military operations against terrorist targets in Afghanistan will continue. So will humanitarian relief efforts and work on a future broad-based government for Kabul.

On his way to Shanghai, Mr. Powell stopped in Pakistan and New Delhi to talk with leaders there about the U.S. war on terrorism. He also discussed the political future of Afghanistan and the eventual formation of a broad-based government there. But he also foresees an interim role for the United Nations until that government is up and running.

Mr. Powell stresses the need to start thinking about Afghanistan's reconstruction. This is not nation-building with troops, he says, it is helping to create the conditions in Afghanistan to prevent more turbulence in the future.

While in Shanghai, Mr. Powell will also hold private talks with his Russian and Chinese counterparts.

The annual APEC meeting usually focuses on trade and other economic issues. But this year's meeting has been overshadowed by the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

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