The U.S. State Department Commits To Assisting Pakistan's Counterterrorism Efforts
State Department Pledges To Support Counter TTP Efforts
Islamabad - The US State Department has pledged its ongoing support to Pakistan in its efforts to combat militant attacks, following a series of suicide bombings that killed over 60 people in two mosques last week.
The security situation in Pakistan has worsened since late last year when the Pakistani Taliban ended a fragile truce with the government and vowed to launch more attacks. Pakistani officials claim that the Pakistani Taliban, also known as TTP, has become more audacious since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August 2021, as U.S. and NATO forces were in the final stages of their withdrawal from the country after two decades of conflict.
The United States Institute of Peace described the scourge of the TTP as "Pakistan's twin Taliban problem." In addition to this analysis, the U.S. State Department's regional report noted a "violent mix" of terror attacks in the region escalating from 2021.
Pakistani authorities believe that TTP militants have found safe havens in Afghanistan and are openly residing there since the Taliban takeover.
The Afghan government maintains that it does not allow its territory to be used by armed groups to launch attacks against other nations.
Responding to queries about why the US did not target TTP and ISIS hideouts in Afghanistan to assist Pakistan, State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller offered the U.S. condolences for the suffering Pakistanis have experienced at the hands of terrorism.
"Earlier this year we held a high-level counterterrorism dialogue to discuss the shared terrorist threats facing our two countries and to work on strategies to cooperate in areas such as border security, terrorist financing – and we will continue to work with Pakistan to ensure that we can better assist Pakistan’s effort to counter all forms of violent extremism," said Miller, as he was quoted by the State Department briefing transcript for October 2.
Miller highlighted that earlier this year, a high-level counterterrorism dialogue took place between the two nations to address shared terrorist threats and develop strategies for cooperation in areas such as border security and terrorist financing.
The recent surge in militant attacks in Pakistan's western provinces has cast a shadow over preparations for upcoming elections and public campaigning scheduled for January.
Despite these attacks, the government has been steadfast in its determination to ensure a secure environment for the electoral process.
The US's continued support in Pakistan's fight against terrorism is crucial, given the volatile nature of the region and the potential for cross-border attacks. The partnership between the two nations is based on shared interests in promoting peace and stability in South Asia.
As the situation in Afghanistan remains uncertain following the Taliban's takeover, the international community recognizes the imperative need to assist Pakistan in securing its borders and preventing the spillover of violence.
The US's commitment to better assist Pakistan in countering militant attacks demonstrates its dedication to the region's security and underscores the importance of continued collaboration between the two nations.
As the US State Department offers assurance of ongoing support to Pakistan;s efforts to counter terrorism, analysts believe progress will be made in the region. By working together, both countries can strengthen their defenses against violent extremist groups and create a more secure future for their citizens.