News / Asia

US Urges Pakistan, Afghanistan to Cooperate on Border Issues

U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan James Dobbins talks to media, in New Delhi, India , Thursday, June 27, 2013
U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan James Dobbins talks to media, in New Delhi, India , Thursday, June 27, 2013
Ayaz Gul
A senior U.S. diplomat has called on Pakistan and Afghanistan to enhance border cooperation to counter violent extremism plaguing the region and advised against “employing militancy as an instrument of policy.”

James Dobbins, the U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, held detailed talks with Pakistani political and military leaders that largely focused on Islamabad’s counter-militancy efforts and its contributions to the U.S.-led international campaign aimed at stabilizing neighboring Afghanistan.
 
Speaking to Pakistan’s state-run television late Friday, he said the United States is supportive of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s efforts to engage the Pakistani Taliban in talks for ending its militancy. He added that Pakistani leaders are also determined to use force if necessary to confront the security challenges facing their country.
 
“We support Pakistan’s efforts to establish the rule of law in Pakistan to eliminate violent extremism, not just the violent extremists who attack Pakistan, but the violent extremists who operate from Pakistani territory and attack neighboring societies," said Dobbins. "We believe that the Nawaz government and the Pakistani army are also committed to moving to reduce and eventually eliminate this kind of violent extremism and we think that would be very positive in terms of Afghanistan’s future development."
 
Pakistan has long been accused of supporting the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan and allowing it to use Pakistani areas for cross-border raids. However, Islamabad recently accused Kabul of sheltering Pakistani militants and helping them stage attacks inside Pakistan.

Dobbins acknowledged cross-border militancy as a mutual problem that the United States is prepared to help both countries address. He also urged them not to officially support militant forces.
 
“I think all of the states of the region need to avoid employing militancy as an instrument of policy, [which] has been a long term strategy that has created a cancer in societies and, in particular, in Pakistan society, which is now threatening the actual existence of the state and its democratic institutions,” he said.
 
The American envoy avoided direct comments on Afghanistan’s reluctance to formally recognize its porous, 2,500-kilometer border with Pakistan as an international frontier. So long as both countries continue to postpone any kind of formal resolution on the larger legal issues involving their common border, he said, Kabul should at least prepare to work with Islamabad to regulate cross-border movements to discourage militant activity.

Dobbins said that Pakistan’s relations with Afghanistan under Prime Minister Sharif have improved, admitting that Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s recent criticism of Islamabad has caused friction.
 
“There continue to be irritations," said Dobbins. "President Karzai has been critical of Pakistan — he has been equally critical of the United States, to be fair. I think both of the likely candidates for the presidency in Afghanistan — and it looks probable that those will be Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani, although we are still awaiting final results and I don’t want to prejudice those — will look for a close relationship with the United States, and I think both of them will also look to an improved relationship with Pakistan." 
 
Dobbins also said Pakistan’s role in promote peace and reconciliation processes with the Taliban in Afghanistan remain important.

Although the Taliban remains unwilling to meet with the current Afghan leadership, he said that the United States is hopeful that the outcome of the presidential election and the impending reduction of Western forces in the country will compel insurgents to re-evaluate their position an consider engaging government entities, which, he said, will be widely recognized and broadly respected.

You May Like

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More