|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Musharraf has not yet reached the end of his line: US
May 17, 2007 18:01 IST
Embattled Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf got a big boost with the United States reinforcing its backing to the General saying he has not yet reached the "end of his line" and that he would get "more support".
The US also said there is no change in its assessment about Pervez Musharraf asserting he seems to be a leader who is "capable of many good things". The General is in the midst of a worst crisis in eight years sparked by the suspension of the chief justice and violence in Karachi.
The US administration's comment came during a briefing when officials were asked about Washington's assessment about the situation in Pakistan.
"I don't think our assessment has fundamentally changed about him (Musharraf) or his role in Pakistani society," State Department Deputy Spokesman Tom Casey said in Washington, DC.
"He (Musharraf) seems to be a leader who is capable of many good things, which is why we have given him a great deal of support, and plan to give more support," US special envoy to the region Ronald Neumann Neumann told the media in Pakistan's capital on Wednesday.
The US also referred to the upcoming elections in Pakistan saying it was important.
"It is in everyone's interest to see that Pakistan develops as a moderate Islamic country that continues to be a good ally with the US in the war on terror and continues to help support its neighbour in Afghanistan deal with the ongoing threat posed by the Taliban," Casey added.
Casey expressed relief that the violence in Karachi was subsiding but said there were issues to be sorted out in the South Asian country.
"In terms of the situation in Pakistan itself, we're pleased to see that the violence that occurred in Karachi has stopped. The issues that are there in the Pakistan political system are ones that need to be resolved peacefully and through their own legal and constitutional procedures," Casey said.
The US backing for the General came in the backdrop of remarks by the Pakistan President's prominent supporter and Sindh Chief Minister Arbab Ghulam that "Allah, Army and America" continued to back Musharraf.
On the issue of crackdown on Taliban and Al Qaeda, Neumann, however, asked Musharraf to do more.
Musharraf had done much, but "not reached his full capacity" in dealing with terrorism and extremism, he said adding "in fact everybody has to do more to help restore peace and stability in Afghanistan. We all need to get forward".
The overall situation with regard to the Taliban was better than a year ago, he said. "I am not trying to tell you that everything is good in Afghanistan. I said I'm relatively more optimistic that I was before," the US envoy, who was here for talks with Pakistan's National Security Secretary Tariq Aziz, said.
He also lauded Musharraf's role in the war against terrorism, saying he is a frontline ally in the war against terrorism but he can take more steps that could bring peace and stability in the region.
On the erection of a fence at the Pak-Afghan border which was opposed by Kabul, Neumann said both sides will have to mull the matter more seriously and reach a solution with mutual understanding.