Sharif assures Obama of action against LeT, other terror groups

Washington, Oct 22 (IANS) Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday assured US President Barack Obama of Islamabad’s resolve to take effective action against Pakistan-based terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and its affiliates responsible for November 2008 Mumbai terror attack.

The assurance was mentioned in a joint statement issued by the Pakistan foreign office after the two met in Obama’s Oval office in the White House on Thursday for the first time in two years.

The two leaders, according to the Pakistani statement, expressed concern over violence along the Line of Control, and noted their support for confidence-building measures and effective mechanisms that are acceptable to both parties.

“The leaders emphasized the importance of a sustained and resilient dialogue process between the two neighbours aimed at resolving all outstanding territorial and other disputes, including Kashmir, through peaceful means and working together to address mutual concerns of India and Pakistan regarding terrorism,” it said.

“In this context, the prime minister apprised the president about Pakistan’s resolve to take effective action against United Nations-designated terrorist individuals and entities, including Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and its affiliates, as per its international commitments and obligations under UN Security Council resolutions and the Financial Action Task Force,” the statement added.

Obama and Sharif, it said “stressed that improvement in Pakistan-India bilateral relations would greatly enhance prospects for lasting peace, stability, and prosperity in the region”.

The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to advancing economic connectivity between Pakistan and its neighbours to promote regional prosperity.

They acknowledged that strengthening Pakistan’s trade and transit ties with its neighbours is needed to promote prosperity in Pakistan and the region.

Sharif also “reaffirmed that Pakistan’s territory will not be used against any other country” and noted that this is an obligation of all countries in the region.

Both leaders affirmed that regional peace and stability required the prevention of attacks across the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

Sharif, it said, outlined the actions that Pakistan is taking under the National Action Plan to ensure that the Taliban – including the Haqqani Network – are unable to operate from the soil of Pakistan.

Earlier, welcoming Sharif to the White House, Obama said he looked forward to using the meeting as an opportunity to further deepen the longstanding relationship between the US and Pakistan.

“Obviously, the United States and Pakistan have a long-standing relationship,” he said. “We work and cooperate on a whole host of issues — not just on security matters, but also on economic and scientific and educational affairs.”

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at

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