‘Pakistan to remain vital for US’


Associated Press of Pakistan

WASHINGTON: A top Republican in the US House of Representatives, Congressman John Boehner has said Pakistan will remain a pivotal US ally and voiced his strong support for long-term assistance for the South Asian country.

The lawmaker, speaking after President Pervez Musharraf's interview was aired on the CNN, also reaffirmed confidence in the Pakistani leader's steadfast efforts in the fight against terrorism, hailing him as a really, very important ally.

"When we look at the threats we face around the world, having Pakistan as one of our allies is important to our long-term future," he told the channel.

Boehner, who is one of the top supporters of President George Bush in Congress, stoutly defended the US military assistance for Pakistan since 9/11, saying it has been well spent in the fight against terror. It is well spent.

They're an important ally of the United States. They're going to continue to be an important ally.

Absolutely, he stated firmly, when asked if he would support continuing military assistance for Pakistan.

Commenting on happenings in Pakistan over the last several months, the congressman was confident that the country will have free and fair parliamentary elections in January 2008.