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Stability critical to Af-Pak mission: Obama

world Updated: Sep 26, 2009 13:28 IST
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US President Barack Obama on Saturday underlined that the stability in Afghanistan and Pakistan is critical to the American mission of defeating the al-Qaeda and the Taliban in the region.

Obama said his overriding goal is to dismantle the al-Qaeda network, to destroy their capacity to inflict harm not just on the US, but people of all faiths and all nationalities all around the world.

"Stability in Afghanistan and in Pakistan are critical to that mission," the President told mediapersons at the end of the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh.

He said after several years of drift in Afghanistan, "we now find ourselves in a situation in which you have strong commitments from the ISAF coalition, our NATO allies, all of them are committed to making this work".

However, he said there's also recognition that after many years of drift, "it's important that we examine our strategies to make sure that they actually can deliver on preventing al-Qaeda from establishing safe havens."

Expressing concern over the allegations of fraud in the recent election in Afghanistan, Obama said he ordered 21,000 additional troops into the country, while his review of the Afghan policy was going on because he thought it was important to secure the election, to make sure that the Taliban did not disrupt it.