Allies in terror war must trust us: Musharraf
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President General Pervez Musharraf on Thursday said mutual trust was a pre-requisite to fight terrorism and Pakistan's allies must not doubt its sincerity and commitment to the fight.
"Our sincerity must not be doubted. We have contributed a lot and suffered a lot... but we are not disillusioned. If (anyone thinks) I am bluffing or the ISI is bluffing, we should be out of the coalition," the President said while addressing the concluding session of a two-day symposium on "Common Security and Global War on Terrorism" at the National University of Defence.
The President told the audience, which included senior military delegates from 21 countries, that the war against terrorism could not be won without trusting each other. He said the Pakistani armed forces had suffered 700 casualties fighting terrorists. He added that 300 foreign militants had been killed during a recent offensive in Waziristan.
He admitted that a deal with tribal elders had not delivered the desired results. "But it should not be scrapped as it involves and engages the locals who want peace," he added.
Musharraf said the Taliban had support from southern Afghanistan where locals backed Taliban guerrillas. "Mullah Omar is also in south Afghanistan. He never came to Pakistan," he said, adding that Pakistan alone could not stop movement on its border with Afghanistan.
While stating that it was a fluid situation and complete success was not possible, Musharrraf said: "But we are moving in the right direction". He added: "Military action must carry on as it buys time and creates an environment to handle the situation. But at the same time involvement of the people, strengthening of civil administration and development activities are a must to win hearts and minds of the people."
Musharraf said there were no Pakistani Taliban in Balochistan. "They are Afghan Taliban who cross the border and find sanctuaries in refugee camps. We have arrested 700 al Qaeda men and eliminated Qaeda from our cities," he claimed.
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