Pakistan welcomes special envoy Holbrooke’s appointment

January 23rd, 2009 - 9:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Barack ObamaIslamabad, Jan 23 (IANS) Terming it an opportunity to improve stability in the region, Pakistan Friday welcomed the appointment of Richard Holbrooke as the special US envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan.”Pakistan welcomes the appointment of ambassador Holbrooke and looks forward to enhanced and fruitful engagement with the special envoy to further the cause of peace and stability of the region,” Dawn quoted the foreign ministry spokesman as saying.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton telephoned Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari Thursday to inform him of the appointment, the spokesman added.

US President Barack Obama said Thursday Islamist extremists in Pakistan and Afghanistan posed a grave threat that his administration would tackle as a single problem under a wider strategy.

He also termed Afghanistan and Pakistan as “the central front” in the fight against terrorism and extremism.

“My administration is committed to refocusing attention and resources on Afghanistan and Pakistan and to spending those resources wisely,” Obama said Thursday on a visit to the State Department on his second day in office to set his foreign policy priorities.

“And that’s why we are pursuing a careful review of our policy,” the president added.

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