A top United States official for South Asia has refuted reports that Vice President Dick Cheney gave any blunt message to President Pervez Musharraf regarding the war on terror, but said Pakistan has to "exercise effective control over all its territory" so that it is not used by terrorists.
Refuting that the Vice President "laid the hammer down", Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Richard Boucher said, "I think a lot of those reports are somebody else's characterisation. I don't think the vice president would characteriae his efforts that way".
"It is a very clear message, though, that we all need to be doing everything possible", Boucher told the House Foreign Affairs Committee, adding "We can't allow ungoverned spaces to exist, and that Pakistan has to exercise effective control over all its territory, the way - just the way we're trying to help Afghanistan exercise effective control over all its territory on the other side of the border."
Boucher told the lawmakers that the Vice President "made clear our support for President Musharraf, our support for the effort they are making against Al-Qaeda and the Taliban, our desire to further support them in their efforts in the border areas, and our desire -- our encouragement to look for more things that can be done to be more effective against the Taliban."