Pakistani prime minister committed to fighting terror: US
( dpa ) - Pakistan's new prime minister, Yousuf Raza Gillani, assured US President George W Bush during a telephone call Tuesday that he is committed to fighting terrorism, the White House said.
"They both agreed that it is in both of the countries both interests to continue to fight terrorists and extremists," spokeswoman Dana Perino said. "So we anticipate continued cooperation."
Gillani was sworn in Tuesday after months of turmoil in Pakistan mainly directed at President Pervez Musharraf, a close US ally in the war on terrorism who came under fire for crackdowns on political dissidents.
Musharraf's backers in the Pakistani parliament were badly defeated in February elections by the Gillani-led Pakistan People's Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League led by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
Sharif, however, warned that there would be some changes in Pakistan's approach after meeting with two top US officials in Islamabad on Tuesday.
"We told them that since 9/11 until now the decisions were made by an individual and therefore these did not reflect the aspiration of the people," Sharif told reporters after his meeting with US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte and Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher.
"The situation has been changed now because an independent parliament has come into being and all the decisions will be made by it," he said.
The United States has relied heavily on Musharraf in the war on terrorism. Numerous senior al-Qaeda figures have been captured in Pakistan with Musharraf's support.
In one of his first acts as prime minister, Gillani ordered the release of six senior judges detained by Musharraf since November 3 to prevent them from ruling against his re-election weeks earlier.