| GEO World|
| Obama terms Afghanistan, Pak central front in war on terror|
| Updated at: 1622 PST, Friday, January 23, 2009|
WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama on Friday said Afghanistan and Pakistan are the central front in the America's war against terrorism and deteriorating situation in the region poses grave threat to the global security.
"This is the central front in our enduring struggle against terrorism and extremism," Obama said reiterating that the Afghan-Pak problem can't be resolved in isolation.
There has to be regional approach to it, he argued.
Addressing the officials of the State Department after Richard Holbrooke was appointed Special US Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Obama said, "There, as in the Middle East, we must understand that we cannot deal with our problems in isolation."
Obama said his administration is committed to refocusing attention and resources on Afghanistan and Pakistan and to spending those resources wisely. "That's why we are pursuing a careful review of our policy," he said.
Obama alleged that the Afghan government had been unable to deliver basic services. "Al-Qaeda and the Taliban strike from bases embedded in rugged tribal terrain along the Pakistani border. And while we have yet to see another attack on our soil since 9/11, Al-Qaeda terrorists remain at large and remain plotting," he said.
Giving an inkling of his yet to be Afghan policy, Obama said, "We will seek stronger partnerships with the governments of the region, sustain cooperation with our NATO allies, deeper engagement with the Afghan and Pakistani people, and a comprehensive strategy to combat terror and extremism."