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Clinton phones Zardari ahead of India visit

July 17, 2009 16:34 IST
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Ahead of her visit to India, United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has assured Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari of America's continued support for the democratic government in Islamabad.

In a telephone call to Zardari late on Thursday night from Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt, Clinton said the US will continue to rally the world to support the government and people of Pakistan, especially with regard to the rehabilitation of people displaced by recent military operations against Taliban militants.

Clinton told Zardari that the US sees the beginning of the return of the displaced people to their homes in Pakistan's northwest as very good news. She congratulated the government on facilitating their return.

She referred to the UN investigation into the killing of former premier Benazir Bhutto and said it was a very positive step into uncovering the people behind her murder. Clinton also said she was looking forward to meeting Zardari at the United Nations General Assembly in September and to visiting Pakistan soon.

Clinton is arriving on Friday night in India on a three-day official visit but Pakistan is not included in her itinerary.

Zardari thanked Clinton for the US administration's support to the people of Pakistan and invited her to visit Pakistan soon.

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