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Pakistan is a failed state, says US lawmaker

Dharam Shourie in New York | December 08, 2008 10:26 IST

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Describing Pakistan a 'failed state', an influential American lawmaker has underlined the need for the United States to tie aid to Islamabad [Images] with the Islamic nation, to ensure that the lawless areas bordering Afghanistan are not used by terrorists to launch attacks like in Mumbai.

If Pakistan is not able to do that, the United States itself should go in, Congressman Frank Pallone told a meeting organised by the Indian community to pay homage to the victims of Mumbai terror attacks [Images] and to call on the Indian government to take tough measures to ensure that such incidents are not repeated.

More than 500 people, including a large number of community leaders belonging to all ethnic political parties, business and activist organisations, attended the meeting where a petition was circulated for signatures urging the US government to move a resolution in the United Nations Security Council, seeking to declare Pakistan a terrorist state.

Paying moving homage to the victims at the meeting held in Fords in New Jersey, the Democrat from New Jersey also called on Pakistan to take strong action against the organisations which are advocating secession of Kashmir from India, to ensure that they do not continue their activities.

But Pallone, who is the founder of the Congressional Caucus on India, cautioned against going to war with Pakistan, saying it would be a 'huge mistake'.

The continuing terrorist attacks on India, he opined, bring out the need for more close cooperation with the United States in fighting and rooting out the scourge. "I believe that going to war would be a huge mistake. I think, we have to look at this in a broad perspective," stressed Pallone, the member of the US House of Representatives.

Pallone said terrorism has affected the United States, India and Western Europe. "I think the lesson that needs to be learned is that the terrorists want more violence. They are basically opposed to negotiations," stressed Pallone, the US Representative from New Jersey.

Another influential lawmaker Senator Robert Menendez, Chairman of the subcommittee on foreign assistance, also called for ending aid to the countries, which are unwilling to fight terrorism in their own territories.

Expressing their full support to whatever steps the Indian government takes, the community leaders called for strong measures to fight terrorism and warn Pakistan in no uncertain term that New Delhi [Images] would not tolerate terrorists planning attacks on India from its soil.

On their part, they pledged to continue to lobby with lawmakers to keep a steady pressure on Pakistan to take urgent steps to fight terrorists on its territory and linking aid to its successes in reining in terrorists.

Stressing the need for the United States to put more pressure on Pakistan, Pallone said it is essentially a failed state as the central government does not control most of the territory.

It is clear that even when it outlaws an organisation, it continues to work through agitations, madrassas (religious schools) and social activities, Pallone underlined.

He said if they (terror group) continue to exist by providing educational opportunities and social services, the Pakistan government has to go there and provide those services and not let these groups do the job.




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