Pakistan a 'strategic priority', says Clinton

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Washington, Mar.28 (ANI): Stressing that it is important to help Pakistan and ensure Washington's success in Afghanistan, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said the relationship with Islamabad is a 'strategic priority'.

Testifying before the Senate's Appropriations Subcommittee, Clinton said US efforts in Pakistan were vital for the success of international forces led by America in Afghanistan against the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and other extremist outfits.

"In Pakistan, our efforts are vital to success in Afghanistan, but also to our own American security. We've made it a strategic priority to strengthen our partnership with the Pakistani people," The Dawn quoted Clinton, as saying.

Clinton said she was aware of the fact that victory against extremists in Pakistan-Afghanistan region would not come quickly.

"I'm under no illusion that success in this arena will come quickly or easily," she said.

Referring to the huge monetary assistance Washington is offering to both Pakistan and Afghanistan and to the other war torn countries, Clinton said the supplement being offered went beyond the original funding request, but would help the United States achieve its objectives.

"Success requires a fully integrated civilian and military effort, one in which security gains are followed immediately by economic and political gain," she said. (ANI)

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