The United States on Thursday said that it is "important" for Pakistan to eliminate the groups that carry out terror attacks against India. "It is important for Pakistan to stop the groups that carry out terrorism in India. Absolutely," Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Richard Boucher told a group of South Asian journalists in Washington.
Boucher's remark comes at a time when Obama Administration is reluctant to support a Congressional legislation which puts this as a condition in lieu of the US aid to Islamabad. However, Boucher indicated that the Administration is not in favour of putting such a clause in the legislation.
"We accept that we, the Congress and actually the Pakistani government have very similar goals... We do not want restrictions to make it impossible to achieve the goals that we all share," Boucher replied when asked about such legislation in the US House of Representatives, which calls for such a condition on Pakistan in lieu of tripling the non-military aid to Pakistan.
"There has never been any question in our mind that threat to Pakistan from terrorism, comes not just from groups fighting in Afghanistan and the groups that are up in the tribal areas. The groups that attack India presents a danger to Pakistan as well," the outgoing diplomat argued.
Observing that the way such terrorist groups are carrying attacks endangers Pakistan and also the relationship between the two countries, Boucher said: "There is no differentiation, all the terrorists are bad and all need to be stopped and eliminated."
Referring to the recently concluded tri-lateral Summit between the US, Afghanistan and Pakistan, he felt that now there is a commitment on the part of the leadership of both the countries to stop terrorism in the region.
"What we hear from both (Pakistan) President (Asif Ali) Zardari and (Afghan) President (Hamid) Karzai is to stop the terrorists and to go after the groups that have been afflicting Pakistan and to really deal with this problem in a resolute manner," Boucher said.
"What that means in terms of the military move, I have to see, but I think the commitment is there and the action we see on the ground supports that," he said, adding: "It is fair to say we see an enormous threat from the terrorist groups and they see as well. Our commitment is to cooperate with them if they take on this threat and we see them doing it."