Kerry says drone attacks not encouraging terrorism

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Islamabad, Apr. 14 (ANI): Chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee John Kerry has rejected claims that the drone attacks are encouraging terrorism in Pakistan.

"Make no mistake about it. Extremists, religious radicals and terrorism did not begin after drone attacks. So it is important for people to focus on that reality as well," the Dawn quoted Kerry, as saying.

Senator Kerry, who is in Islamabad to discuss the proposed aid package, said that the provisions attached with US aid package to Pakistan were only meant to improve the 'effectiveness of aid'.

One such improvement would be eliminating the need of US backed drones in Pakistan's Tribal areas.

"The importance of setting on the new path is that it could eliminate the need for drones and many other things," Kerry said.

Responding to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's criticism that the United States and its Western allies were creating 'ill-will' about Pakistan, Kerry said relationship between Islamabad and Washington was at the centre of US policy.

"I'm here to discuss the new way forward in our relationship, which should not be defined by extremism or response to militancy," he said.

Gilani had told Kerry: "The negative messaging emanating from the US and the West is generating ill-will."

On Pakistan's concerns about enhanced role of India in Afghanistan, he said he was expecting forward movement in coming months in relations between the two countries to a point where India's role in Afghanistan would become less threatening for Pakistan. (ANI)

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