July 3, 2012

Panetta welcomes opening of Pakistan supply lines

by Cheryl Pellerin
American Forces Press Service

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta July 3 welcomed Pakistan’s decision to open ground lines of communication on the border with Afghanistan that have been closed since November.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced the decision after a telephone call this morning with Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.

“As I have made clear,” Panetta said, “we remain committed to improving our partnership with Pakistan and to working closely together as our two nations confront common security challenges in the region.”

On the call with Khar, Clinton said, “I once again reiterated our deepest regrets for the tragic incident in Salala last November. I offered our sincere condolences to the families of the Pakistani soldiers who lost their lives.”

Clinton and Khar acknowledged the mistakes that resulted in the loss of Pakistani military lives, she added.

“We are sorry for the losses suffered by the Pakistani military,” she added. “We are committed to working closely with Pakistan and Afghanistan to prevent this from ever happening again.”

In reopening the ground lines of communication, Pakistan will not charge transit fees in the larger interest of peace and security in Afghanistan and the region, Clinton said.

“This is a tangible demonstration of Pakistan’s support for a secure, peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan and our shared objectives in the region,” she said, adding that the move will help the United States and the International Security Assistance Force conduct the planned drawdown at a much lower cost.

“This is critically important to the men and women who are fighting terrorism and extremism in Afghanistan,” Clinton said.

Khar said no lethal equipment will transit Pakistan into Afghanistan unless it is meant to equip the Afghan national security force.

During the call, Khar and Clinton discussed the importance of taking coordinated action against terrorists who threaten Pakistan, the United States and the region, she said.

Clinton said she and Khar also discussed supporting Afghanistan’s security, stability and efforts towards reconciliation, and continuing to work together to advance the two nations’ many other shared interests, from increasing trade and investment to strengthening our people-to-people ties.

“Our countries should have a relationship that is enduring, strategic and carefully defined, and that enhances the security and prosperity of both our nations and the region,” the secretary said.

U.S. and Pakistani troops are in a fight against a common enemy, she said, and have enhanced counterterrorism cooperation against terrorists that threaten both countries, with the goal of defeating al-Qaida in the region.

As the call ended, Clinton said, “I reiterated our deep appreciation to the government and the people of Pakistan for their many sacrifices and their critical contribution to the ongoing fight against terrorism and extremism.”

All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.



Defense cuts could hit civilian workforce

Tens of thousands of civilian employees in the Defense Department could receive warnings about potential layoffs four days before the November election if impending spending cuts aren’t averted, hitting presidential battleground states such as Virginia and Florida hard. The alerts would come in addition to any that major defense contractors might send out at the...
Air Force photograph by SSgt. William P. Coleman

Training exercises enhance international relations

Air Force photograph by SSgt. William P. Coleman Colombian air force Kfir aircraft prepare for a mission during Red Flag 12-4 July 18, 2012, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. A U.S. Air Force pilot rides in the backseat of a Kfir ...

Airbus owner EADS ups targets, delays A350

Airbus parent company EADS NV July 27 announced a further delay to its new A350 aircraft as it reported second-quarter earnings that almost quadrupled from a year ago. Net profit at the Leiden, Netherlands-based European Aeronautic Defence & Space Company was $567 million, up from $148 million in the same period a year ago. Sales...

Courtesy photograph

Boeing receives 10th WGS satellite order from U.S. Air Force

Courtesy photograph The Wideband Global SATCOM satellite is the successor to the Defense Satellite Communications System-III. One WGS satellite has about 12 times the bandwidth of a DSCS-III satellite. EL SEGUNDO, Calif. –...

Lockheed Martin’s Gyrolinkâ„¢ selected for U.S. Army’s R-VOSS program

Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $21.4 million contract from the U.S. Army for its commercial GyroLinkâ„¢ system for the Remote – Vehicle Optics Sensor System program. GyroLink provides a real-time full motion video network that transmits video across military vehicles at significant distances. This allows members of a route-clearance patrol to use monitors inside...

News Briefs – July 30, 2012

Mechanical failure blamed in Arizona Harrier crash Military officials say early findings point to mechanical failure in the crash of a U.S. Marine Corps Harrier attack jet on a training mission in southwestern Arizona. The AV-8B Harrier went down July 25 afternoon about 15 miles northwest of the Marine Corps Air Station Yuma near the...


Be the first to comment!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>