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Diplomacy in Action

Interview With Sami Abraham of Geo TV


Interview
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
West Point Military Academy
West Point, NY
December 1, 2009

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[Transcript Source: Geo TV]

QUESTION: Secretary, thank you very much for being with us. Tell us, it was said before announcing the Afghan policy that Pakistani point of view will be taken into consideration and Pakistanis they have expressed their concern about surge of troops inside Afghanistan how the Pakistanis concerns have been addressed in this new strategy.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, there was a great deal of consultation of course, when I visited the country. I spent time talking with both leaders of government as well as the military and intelligence services. I spoke with other representatives, citizens, our national security advisor General Jones, head of CIA Leon Panetta, General McChrystal and General Petraeus. We have been consulting on an ongoing basis with our counterparts in Pakistan. And I think what the President will announce today is very much in keeping with what we heard. Every one wants a stable and secure Afghanistan. Pakistan does not want to see problems being exported to your country. They want to see Afghanistan with the ability to defend itself. Al-Qaida and their extremist allies are threatening to every one. We know that the terrible violence that has been afflicted on the people of Pakistan over the last week emanates from a syndicate of terror. So we want to help Afghanistan take more responsibility. We want to partner with Pakistan as you make sure that you protect your sovereignty and territory. We think that in the long term, that is in the best interest of all three countries.

QUESTION: Madam Secretary, keeping in mind the political situation in Pakistan, do you believe that the present government – the political government is able to deliver what the world is expecting of them?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, democracy builds strong institutions and I think Pakistan is committed to democracy. Your internal political challenges are ones for you to address but we want to support democracy of Pakistan. We want to do so in a way that will strengthen it and will give the people of Pakistan the kind of future they tell us that they want. We have expressed here all the time, schools for every one, healthcare for every one, better jobs for every one. That’s what every one wants and I think what we want to do is to be a good partner to help you achieve that.

QUESTION: Secretary, thank you very much.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Nice to talk with you.

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PRN: 2009/1228



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