Pak will hopefully avoid becoming next US military target: James Jones

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Washington, Oct 10 (ANI): Pakistan will "hopefully avoid" the 'unfortunate eventuality' of becoming the next US military target, US National Security Adviser James Jones has stated.

In an interview to Spiegel Online, Jones said that the US had been "working very closely with the Pakistani government for a long time now. In some cases the Pakistanis have responded quite well," but they needed to do much more in fight against terrorism.

"...There has been a very steady message that Pakistan needs to do more to stem terrorism, especially when they know where it is and when officials have information about what the terrorists are doing," the outgoing advisor noted.

"If the Pakistanis are going to be a partner in the long term, they have to make a commitment that shows the watching world that they are serious about forms of terrorism," he added.

When asked whether there was a possibility that Pakistan could become the next military target of the US if its cooperation with the Pakistani army failed, Jones replied, "I am going to take the optimistic view that rational people do rational things and that- with the help of friends and allies and common goals- Pakistan will avoid, or hopefully avoid, that unfortunate eventuality. But hope is not a strategy, so we have to be cognizant of the fact that there are things, which could happen, that could alter the relationship if we are not careful."

Talking about the NATO forces, he said that contrary to the impression, NATO had not failed as an effective alliance in Afghanistan. "The soldiers are doing a lot and the final chapter hasn't been written yet. We should wait and see how the transition period works out," he added.

On giving up military bases in Afghanistan and pulling out, Jones said the US had "every intention" of honouring its long-term commitment in Afghanistan and Pakistan. "We want the Afghans to assume eventual responsibility, but it does include long-term economic programs, long-term stability programs and long-term governance programs," he added. (ANI)

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