Will press Pak as ''hard'' as possible: US

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New Delhi, Jul 19: Admitting that counter-terrorism was "first and foremost" on its minds after last week's Mumbai bomb blasts, the US today (Jul 19) pledged "full" support to India's efforts to protect itself from terror attacks, and said it will press Pakistan as "hard" as it can on terror.

After the second round of Indo-US Strategic Dialogue with her counterpart External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pointed out that the issue of homeland security and counter-terrorism was given a special emphasis, saying both sides were exploring ways to protect the two countries from the scourge of terrorism.

Asserting that it has been made clear to Pakistan that confronting violent extremism of all sorts is in its interest, Clinton said, "We do not believe that there are any terrorists who should be given safe haven or a free pass by any government, because left unchecked the consequences of that kind of terrorist activity or intimidation can become very difficult to manage and control."

At a joint press conference with Krishna, she said in the aftermath of the attacks of 2008 in Mumbai, the US had made it very clear that there was an absolute international responsibility to cooperate to bring the perpetrators to justice.

The US has made that equally forcefully clear to Pakistan that it has a special obligation to do so transparently, fully and urgently, Clinton said.

"And it is US policy, we believe the perpetrators need to be brought to justice and have urged Pakistan to do so.

Obviously, there is a limit to what both the US and India can do but we intend to continue to press as hard as possible," she said.

She was replying to a query about Pakistan failing to bring to justice the perpetrators of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, raising questions on US' claim of pressurising Pakistan on India-directed terror issue. 


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