Beijing urged to do more to help with terror fight (2)

08:24, October 16, 2009      

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"One thing I will show you (that) we have the ability, we have the will to fight against terrorism," Gilani said. He stressed anti-terrorism was his "priority number one".

Gilani said the death of Mehsud signaled a "new thrust" for his government's effort.

"The SCO can play an extremely important role in combating terrorism and extremism," Gilani added.

The SCO - whose members include China, Russia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan - had its eighth prime ministers' meeting in Beijing on Wednesday. Both Gilani and Khalili attended - as representatives from an observing country and a guest nation.

Chinese experts said China should have a comprehensive plan to help neighboring countries combat terror.

Dong Manyuan, an anti-terror expert at China Institute of International Studies, said Beijing could help Pakistan improve the armament of government forces and strengthen collaboration in intelligence exchange.

"The Chinese government should offer help to settle war refugees in Pakistan," Dong said, noting Islamabad's anti-terror mission had displaced about three million people.

He said Beijing should discuss the issue with SCO member states.

But he too cautioned against China getting involved militarily in Afghanistan.

"Relying solely on sending more troops to the region won't work because the key is to resolve the problem of development," Dong said.

The top US and NATO commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, has recommended sending at least 40,000 additional troops and trainers as part of a beefed-up counterinsurgency strategy.

Washington already has 65,000 troops there, a figure expected to reach 68,000 later this year. Other nations, mainly NATO allies, have some 39,000 troops in the country, Reuters reported.

Wang Shida, an expert on Afghanistan studies at China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, said the SCO "has no consensus on sending troops" to Kabul.

The SCO is a regional mechanism framework, which offers mainly non-military help to Afghanistan, he said, although fighting terrorism was originally the prime mission of the SCO.

China is engaged in reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan, but has no military involvement.

Source: China Daily
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