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  • Japanese Initiative on Pakistan Welcome

    When Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visits Japan this week, one of the main topics of conversation will be developments in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Japan has played an important role in contributing to efforts to stabilize and secure South Asia over the last seven years. Washington should welcome a more robust Japanese role in the region and strongly support Tokyo’s plan to hold an international donor’s meeting on Pakistan (possibly in March) to help raise funds for the cash-strapped economy.

    Japan has already played a helpful role in Afghanistan, despite the unpopularity of the war back home. Tokyo replenished support to the Japanese maritime self-defense force in the Indian Ocean, and recently increased aid to Afghanistan and Pakistan by $300 million to deal with food shortages and to support upcoming elections in Afghanistan.

    Washington needs to work more closely with key allies like Japan to help stabilize Pakistan, which faces numerous challenges ranging from battling Taliban militants in its northwest to an economic crisis that threatens to bankrupt the country. Working more closely with other countries to influence events in Pakistan can help reduce animus toward the U.S., which is widely viewed as dictating policy toward the 165-million strong nuclear-armed Muslim nation. On the other hand, a recent poll showed that 53 percent of Pakistanis believe Japan has a positive influence on the world. Tokyo should take advantage of this good will it has from Pakistanis to become more involved in efforts to bolster economic and social development in the country.

    Demonstrating it may finally be ready to crack down on Pakistan-based terrorist groups, the Pakistani government admitted last week that Pakistanis were involved in the Mumbai terrorist attacks last November and indicated that Islamabad was deepening investigations into the role of senior members of the local extremist group Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LT). For the last three months, Pakistan had denied any involvement in the Mumbai terror attacks, despite mounting evidence from both India and the U.S. that the LT was behind the carnage. The LT claims it is being falsely accused for the attacks and has criticized Pakistani officials for caving in to Indian and U.S. pressure.

    The Pakistani government admission could presage further instability in Pakistan as hardliners object to a crackdown on a group they consider legitimate “freedom fighters” in Kashmir. Washington must back the civilian government in Pakistan as it weathers a possible coming storm and demonstrate it will support Islamabad, so long as it takes the steps necessary to clamp down on terrorism and extremism in all its forms.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    4 Responses to Japanese Initiative on Pakistan Welcome

    1. David South Carolin says:

      The Obama Presidency is now being tested by Pakistan and others. How will Obama react to the use of Islamic law in Pakistan. Where do this leave women and human rights. Will he turn a blind eye, or will he act as Bush did.

    2. COL.[retd] A.M.Khaja says:

      Towards a peaceful resolution of Kashmir problem

      It is right time for the leadership of India and Pakistan to think outside the box in regard to Kashmir and its people. As the Kashmir-Line of Control (LoC) is the Line of Conflict (LoC), slowly, surely, and peacefully make it irrelevant for exploiters and bad elements on either side.

      Peaceful resolution of Kashmir is crucial and critical for the present and future generations of the region. If Kashmir people’s issue is not addressed, the safety and security of over one billion will remain uncertain. The people in the Indo-Pak region and the rest of the world should always be of our top concern and interest.

      Everybody, every leader, and every institution should take it upon themselves to exercise extreme care and caution. We all should avoid any provocative, inflammatory, and rancorous language, acts, and activities in and around the sensitive region.

      At the same time, we and the world cannot afford to ignore the plight and aspirations of the people of Kashmir. These people have been divided by the Line of Control andor the ceasefire line. Like the Berlin wall, it needs to be slowly, surely, and peacefully removed, erased, and dismantled by firm and resolute involvement of all. A courageous and bold action is needed by true, caring and visionary leadership of the region.

      The people of occupied and divided Kashmir have sacrificed a lot in last seven decades. The multiple promises, pledges, and commitments that have been made to the people of Kashmir over the last six decades need to honoured.

      As a Kashmir-born naturalised American citizen and having spent equal parts of my life in each of the two countries of mine, it is my inherent duty and obligation to comment on this matter.

      The question of nuclear weapons should be only discussed for denuclearisation. The aim and focus should be to address the plight and aspirations of the people of Kashmir with the ultimate goal of erasing the Line of Conflict.

      COL. A. M. KHAJAWALL (Retd.),

    3. dr s s d pandey,new says:

      Well, let us wish sinceely that most, if not all the conflicts on this plannet, including Kashmir like many others, are resolved peacefully.Things take time and human beings, in their very nature, have been and are compassionte.What we must aim, if possible, is to minimise the interferences by vested interests.

      The most pressing problem at the moment is to prevent the terrorist groups and Talibanis,who are untamable by the world community, from taking over to the Pakistan as a whole,lives of its human residents,and its nuclear warheads.

      It is really dangerous not only to the people of Pakistan, India or the South Asia but the whole plannet.


    4. Pingback: FBI to question Mumbai suspects held in Pak « rssamerica-News-Business-Politics-Sports-Entertainment

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