Clinton rules out military government in Pakistan, says nukes in safe hands

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has ruled out the possibility of an undemocratic or military government coming into power in Islamabad, saying that a weak government in Pakistan will be harmful for India too, according to a TV Channel in India.

“There is no appetite, at least as we speak today, to return to a non-democratic, military government,” she said in an interview with the channel.

Talking about Pakistan’s nuclear assets, Clinton said that at this time, the nuclear command-and-control structure was well managed. “Now that is something that we are all concerned about. It’s one of the reasons that I will be talking to my Indian counterparts about how we can prevent the proliferation of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction to rogue states or non-state actors and other terrorist groups,” she said.

The secretary of state said the Pakistani government and the people even more so, were very committed to their own fight against terrorism.

Qaeda leaders: US officials “firmly believe” that Al Qaeda leaders who planned and carried out the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, are hiding in Pakistan near its border with Afghanistan, Clinton told a news conference concluding three days of meetings in New Delhi. Clinton said Washington had told the Pakistani government what it believes to be the locations of Al Qaeda leaders on its soil. “We are actively looking for additional information that would lead us to them,” she added.

‘Real will’: Hillary Clinton also told students at the Delhi University that Pakistan has ‘real will’ to fight terrorism and the US will enlist the help of everyone, including India, to fight this global menace.

“We have to look for ways to support those who oppose terror. Combating terrorism and extremism is our number one challenge,” she said.

She also underlined the need for dialogue between India and Pakistan.

“I sincerely hope we can find more ways to enhance people-to-people [contacts] particularly in this region and I believe that it holds great promise,” Clinton said.

“Military strength does not define the greatness of nation… soft powers are more appealing.”

“When the 9/11 terror attack happened, I was there, and I believe that we should try to avoid such attacks…” she said adding “It is hard to build and easier to destroy. We need to be builders not destroyers.”daily times monitor/agencies