Pak govt ready for talks with militants if they surrender: PM

Islamabad, Jan 19 (PTI) Describing terrorism and extremismas the "biggest threat" to Pakistan, Premier Yousuf RazaGilani today said his government is ready to hold talks withmilitants who "decommission" themselves and surrender topolitical authorities in the country''s restive tribal belt.

"If they decommission themselves and surrender to thepolitical agents, then we are ready to hold talks with them,"Gilani told reporters on the sidelines of an official functionhere.

"We cannot hold talk with terrorists," he said.

The world knows that the "biggest threat" facing Pakistancomes from terrorism and extremism, he added.

The government will not make any compromises on nationalsecurity as terrorism is responsible for the economicchallenges confronting the country, Gilani said in response toquestions from the media.

The war on terrorism is being fought by the government inconsultation with the leadership of all political parties, hesaid.

Operations against militants had been successful becausethey were backed by the people and the political leadership,he said.

Though law and order is a provincial issue, federal andprovincial authorities have to jointly tackle terrorism as itseffects are being felt everywhere, the Premier said.

Collective wisdom is also needed to contain violence inthe financial hub of Karachi and consultations are being heldto find a solution, he said.

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