US reiterates Pakistan has right to defend itself against terrorism

ISLAMABAD: The United States has again called on interim government of Afghanistan to ensure that its soil is not used as launching pad for terrorist activities, saying Pakistan has the right to hit back at terrorism.

According to a Radio Pakistan’s report, during daily news briefing, State Department Spokesman Ned Price said Pakistan has a right to defend itself from terrorism as people have suffered tremendously from terrorist attacks.

He said we are aware of the recent statement by the Pakistani National Security Committee (NSC) that said no country will be allowed to provide sanctuaries and facilitation to terrorists and that Pakistan reserves the right to safeguard its people.

The statement from US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price comes two days after the NSC- the highest civil-military forum for decisions on matters pertaining to national security -expressed firm resolve to crush terrorist groups operating against Pakistan.

At a press briefing on Tuesday, the US State Department spokesperson said the US was aware of the NSC’s recent statement.

“The Pakistani people have suffered tremendously from terrorist attacks. Pakistan has a right to defend itself from terrorism,” Price said in response to a question.

He said that the [Afghan] Taliban must uphold the very commitment they had made that their soil would never be used as a launchpad for international terrorist attacks.

“These are among the very commitments that the Taliban have been unable or unwilling to fulfil to date,” he added.

The meeting, which was chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and attended by key ministers, services chiefs, and top intelligence officials, also endorsed the government’s road map for the restoration of economic stability in the country.

The NSC meeting was called to deliberate on the surge in terrorist attacks and the deepening economic crisis.

Most of the attacks have been carried out by the proscribed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

The increase in border incidents involving Taliban forces was also discussed at the forum.

The committee agreed on a number of steps to deal with the worsening security situation, which has also drawn the attention of a number of important capitals prompting them to issue advisories for their nationals residing here.

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