Gilani concerned over US inaction on Raymond Davis


Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Tuesday raised Pakistan’s concern over the US administration’s inaction against CIA operative Raymond Davis, saying that the people of Pakistan were expecting a “thorough investigation” into the Davis case in the US under its law. Talking to a US Congressional delegation, led by Doug Lamborn, at the PM’s House, Gilani said the US presence in Pakistan should be seen as a source of peace and prosperity by the people of Pakistan.
Calling for an early conclusion of the Free Trade Agreement between Islamabad and Washington, Gilani said economic activity would address the issues of poverty and unemployment, particularly in the underdeveloped and militancy-affected areas. However, he said the US administration and particularly the US Congress needed to be sensitive about the opinion and views of the people of Pakistan for paving the way for a long-term strategic partnership based on mutual trust, respect and interest.
The provision of civil nuclear technology, reimbursement of large amount of the withheld Coalition Support Fund to Pakistan and utilisation of funds under the Kerry Lugar act for signature projects having direct bearing on the life of ordinary people, the prime minister said, would help build a positive image of the US in the country. He stressed upon the need for positive messaging about each other in both countries and regretted that certain incidents were blown out of proportion in a negative way about Pakistan in the US, which obviously drew a reaction in Pakistan.
Underlining Pakistan’s strong commitment to cooperate with the US in defeating terrorism, Gilani stressed the need for concerted efforts by both sides to bridge the trust deficit through reinforced cooperation in intelligence sharing, joint action against al Qaeda and its affiliates as well as progress on various segments of strategic dialogue in the multifaceted fields. The prime minister also talked about Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s forthcoming visit to Pakistan during which the inaugural session of the joint commission on reconciliation between the two countries is scheduled along with the launching of Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement.
The members of US Congressional delegation called Pakistan an extremely important country in the war against terrorism. They assured the prime minister that despite strong sentiments in the US Congress for reducing the budget deficit and cutting down on foreign aid, the economic assistance to Pakistan would continue.


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