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Pakistan's cooperation essential in stabilizing Afghanistan: NATO chief


08:42, December 08, 2011

BRUSSELS, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on Wednesday that Pakistan's help is essential in securing and stabilizing Afghanistan, days after the alliance's cross-border air raids killed 24 Pakistani soldiers.

"I fully agree ... we need a positive engagement of Pakistan if we are to ensure long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan and in the region. So there is no alternative," he told reporters ahead of a two-day session of NATO foreign ministers.

"The only way forward is positive cooperation between Afghanistan and Pakistan, between the United States and Pakistan, between NATO and Pakistan," Rasmussen said.

"I hope to see further progress in our relationship. We have offered a political framework for cooperation between NATO and Pakistan," he said.

On November 26, NATO fighter jets and helicopters bombed two Pakistan's border posts, leaving 24 Pakistani soldiers killed.

Islamabad reacted angrily to the attack by pulling out of an international conference on Afghanistan's future on Monday in Bonn, Germany.

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