Pakistan's Zardari Says Needs Help With Terrorism
Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari called on Britain and the United States on Monday to do more to help his government fight terrorism and insisted he would not allow Islamic militancy to take over in Pakistan.

Zardari said his Pakistan Peoples Party had brought democracy to the country after eight years under the military rule of General Pervez Musharraf, and the international community should now play its part.

Asked in an interview on Sky News television to outline his key message to Britain and the United States, Zardari said: "The message is: You've got democracy, democracy is part of the solution -- but ... the second part of the solution is with you, so please give us the help that we need."

Zardari gave no details in the broadcast interview of what kind of help he wanted, but Sky News quoted him on its Web site as saying: "We haven't received a dollar. Until then we don't have the tools to fight."

Western allies fear that recent political instability in Pakistan is allowing Islamic militant groups like al Qaeda and the Taliban to take hold in vulnerable areas of the nuclear-armed Muslim nation, but Zardari rejected such fears.

"The Taliban are not going to be in control of any part of my country," he said, adding that reports of Sharia law being handed down in some areas of the country were "media hype".

Zardari, the widower of assassinated former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, said the international community had to recognise and accept its role in the rise of Islamic militancy and international terrorism.

"The world has to accept that we are all collectively responsible for creating this monster," he said. "I think the world has not been told about this, they have not been talking about it, they have been in denial."

He rejected suggestions that his government was seeking to duck its responsibilities, saying: "It is my fight, it is our fight, it is Pakistan's war, we will fight it. But, if you help us we can do it sooner."


Comments Add New
Write comment
  We don't publish your mail. See privacy policy.
Please input the anti-spam code that you can read in the image.