World Cannot Remain Indifferent to Kashmir: NATO Chief

ISLAMABAD: The chairman of NATO's Military Committee has said that the Kashmir issue must be addressed and that the world cannot remain indifferent to it.

In a meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif here on Thursday, General Peter said the scale of Pakistan's counter-terrorism campaign was quite large with impressive results, and mentioned that the country had shown great progress against militancy in the last couple of years.

According to a statement issued from the PM House, General Pavel termed Pakistan an important and traditional partner of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).

The NATO military committee chairman said, by virtue of its size, Pakistan could play an important role in the region.

"We expect a broader political framework agreement between Pakistan and NATO to unlock further mutual military cooperation," General Pavel said.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said his government had a stated policy on Afghanistan, which he expressed from the day first on assumption of his office.

"We have conveyed to the leadership of Afghanistan that the enemies of Afghanistan are the enemies of Pakistan and we have stood by our words," he said.

The prime minister said even yesterday, Pakistan announced an assistance of $500 million in addition to an earlier assistance of $500 million for Afghanistan to help them overcome problems and achieve stability.

"We genuinely believe that stability in Afghanistan is crucial for achieving stability in our own country and the region," added the prime minister.

"I myself and the Chief of Army Staff visited Afghanistan and always assured them of our fullest cooperation to root out the menace of terrorism which is a common enemy for both the countries," emphasized PM Nawaz Sharif.

The prime minister said the Pakistani civil and military leadership were in touch with Afghani leadership and had been facilitating the reconciliation process on the request of the Afghan government.

"We believe that the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned reconciliation process is vital for achieving long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan," the prime minister said.

General Peter Pavel said his meetings with all the services chiefs and others were highly satisfactory.

"I am highly impressed with the state of affairs, professional standards and approach of Pakistan's Armed Forces. I would like to acknowledge the comprehensive counter-terrorism strategy which has achieved a lot and there are many lessons for NATO to learn from it," the Chairman of NATO's Military Committee said.

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