Pressure On Pakistan To Crack Down On Terror Has To Be Kept Up: U.S. Envoy
NEW DELHI: The pressure on Pakistan to crack down on terrorism has to be kept up and the U.S. remains strongly engaged with India to tackle the menace which is affecting regional peace, U.S. ambassador Richard Verma said.
Appreciating Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Lahore outreach, Verma said there was a need to work with the moderates in Pakistan and that the U.S. was working with Islamabad on the issue of terror.
"We have to keep the pressure up, keep the leverage up work with moderate forces, work with Prime Minister Sharif and that's exactly the US President has done, secretary (John) Kerry has done and we will continue to do it," he told NDTV.
The envoy said India's engagement with Pakistan was important and that US President Barack Obama was appreciative of Modi's outreach in Lahore last month.
He said Obama has appreciated decisions by Modi and Sharif to stick to talks despite the Pathankot terror attack.
On reports about the US negotiating a civil nuclear deal with Pakistan similar to the one it had with India, Verma categorically said no such proposal was on the table.
Asked why US was not putting enough pressure on Pakistan to come down hard on terror infrastructure, the envoy said Washington has different relationship with both the countries and that its counter-terrorism cooperation with India was expanding rapidly.
He said there was a need to strengthen democracy in Pakistan while putting pressure on the country to tackle terrorism and bring to book perpetrators of terror attacks.