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Pak, US to form energy work group: Joint statement

Written by: Staff
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Islamabad, Mar 04: Pakistan and United States will hold a high-level meeting on energy and form a working group to explore ways to meet Islamabad's growing needs and strengthen its energy security.

''The two countries will work together to develop public and private collaboration on a broad range of energy sources,'' the joint statement issued after formal talks between President Pervez Musharraf and his US counterpart George W Bush in Islamabad, during which the former raised issue of Islamabad's energy requirements.

President Bush had earlier ruled out nuclear cooperation with Pakistan at a joint press conference with President Musharraf.

''Pakistan and India are two different countries with different needs and history,'' he said.

President Musharraf and President Bush supported the peace process and composite dialogue between Pakistan and India for improvement of relations and resolution of disputes and building a better future in South Asia.

The statement said the two leaders also decided to build a robust defense relationship that advances shared security goals, promotes regional stability, and contributes to international security.

''The US will continue robust security assistance to meet Pakistan's legitimate defense needs and bolster its capabilities in the war on terror,'' it said.

While reiterating their commitment to continue counter-terror cooperation and to further strengthen long-term and broad based strategic relationship with Pakistan, the US President told reporters it was important to defeat terrorism.

''We will fight and win this war together,'' he asserted.

President Bush also called for greater intelligence sharing and the need for the Pakistani forces to move quickly, and assured that his government would provide the necessary equipment to Pakistan.

The two leaders also underscored the need for a comprehensive strategy for addressing the threat of terrorism and extremism.

UNI

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