Bush meets Zardari, discusses US incursion of PakistanSeptember 24th, 2008 - 1:32 am ICT by IANS
New York, Sep 23 (IANS) US President George W. Bush met his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari here Tuesday and acknowledged tensions between the two countries over US military incursions into Pakistan territory to target militants operating in neighbouring Afghanistan.Bush expressed sorrow for the victims of the weekend truck bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, which killed at least 53 people.
“I know that you — your heart went out to the families of those who suffer and so does the collective heart of the American people; we stand with you,” Bush told Zardari. Both were in New York for the UN General Assembly session.
While the US has been exerting pressure on Pakistan to act strongly against Al Qaeda and Taliban insurgents along its border, Pakistan has accused the US of violating its sovereignty.
“Your words have been very strong about Pakistan’s sovereign right and sovereign duty to protect your country, and the US wants to help,” Bush said, adding: “Pakistan is an ally, and I look forward to deepening our relationship.”
Bush also touched on the global economic crisis, and said the US wants “our friends around the world to be making a good living. He expressed confidence that the Republicans and Democrats in the Congress will come together to pass the legislation about economic balilout to stabilize the markets.
Zardari, the widower of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto who was assassinated in December last year, said democracy has come full circle in Pakistan “and it’s been the help of all the friends around the world and we are thankful to the world for helping democracy.”
“We will solve all the problems. We have a situation. We have issues. We’ve got problems. But we will solve them and we will rise to the occasion. That’s what my wife’s legacy is all about,” Zardari told Bush.