Our friends should help us at this difficult time: GilaniOctober 22nd, 2008 - 10:12 am ICT by IANS
Islamabad, Oct 22 (Xinhua) Pakistan will seek support in its war against terrorism at a meeting with European countries to be held in Beijing this week, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has said. “I expect a lot of interactions with all the world leaders. And there would be an opportunity to discuss with them our basic problem; that is extremism and terrorism in the country,” Gilani said in an interview.
“We are fighting for peace, prosperity and progress of the whole world. Therefore, our friends should help us at this difficult time,” he said.
Gilani will visit China to attend the 7th ASEM summit (Asia-Europe meeting) Oct 23-25. Pakistan will participate for the first time at the meeting since it joined the group in 2006.
Gilani said Pakistan, being strategically in the frontline of the anti-terror war, has suffered a lot from terrorism. Due to terrorist attacks, there have been no major investments in the country, he said.
Militant activities have intensified across Pakistan in recent months, mainly in response to the army offensives against the militants in northwestern part of the country.
Pakistan is stepping up military operations in the northwestern tribal regions that are believed to be strongholds of pro-Taliban militants.
Gilani’s three-pronged strategy to fight terrorism in the tribal areas is through political dialogue, development and military action.
In reference to the recent cross-border missile attacks by the US-led forces in Afghanistan, Gilani warned that Pakistan will not allow any country to interfere in its sovereignty.
Gilani urged the European and Asian nations to enhance cooperation in the energy sector, including civilian nuclear power cooperation. He invited other countries to invest in the sector.
Gilani will meet Chinese and other leaders at the meeting in Beijing. He will also meet Chinese businessmen to discuss trade and investment opportunities.
“The Sino-Pakistani relations are time-tested and all-weather friendship… And it’s not only government-to-government contact, (but) also people-to-people contact,” Gilani said.
“We have a lot of friends. The best one is China,” he said.