Washington, Sep 7: Pakistan's Ambassador to the United States, Hussain Haqqani has ruled out a cooling of ties between Islamabad and Washington in the wake of the recent attacks by international forces in Pakistan's tribal regions, saying bilateral ties are resilient and would withstand the difficulties coming in the way. Addressing the Carnegie Endowment for Peace here, Haqqani said that Pakistan expects the United States to persuade its NATO allies and Afghanistan to look upon it as a partner.
As far as U.S. policy towards Pakistan was concerned, the envoy said Washington needed to recognize that Pakistan is a significant and important country under all circumstances. "It is a nuclear armed nation that has demonstrated its nuclear weapon capability. It is a nation of 160 million people, a majority Muslim country, and a strategically located nation on the crossroads of the Middle East, South Asia and Central Asia," the Daily Times quoted Haqqani, as saying.
"Pakistan is important in its own right and it is time to engage Pakistan on a long-term basis," he added.
He also said that there is no short-term solution to the menace of terrorism, and that dealing with this menace required much more than just a military component.
"It will include political, ideological, and socio-economic components and those fighting terrorism will need to reach the phenomenon's roots," he argued.
Turning to Pakistan's relations with both India and Afghanistan, Haqqani said these ties should not be viewed through the same single lens.
"We need more Pakistanis to understand the American perspective and be sympathetic to it rather than enrage more Pakistanis against the US," he said.