WASHINGTON: The United States has welcomed the additional Pakistani steps to wipe out militants operating on its soil and citing December 16, 2014 atrocious attack on Peshawar’s Army Public School underscored that more Muslims have been victims of terror than anybody else.
“We spend a lot of time — and for good reason — talking about the terror attacks that were carried out in Paris a couple of weeks ago.
But just a week or two before that, we saw an atrocious terrorist attack carried out in Peshawar, Pakistan, where more than a hundred school children were gunned down in their school by extremists,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest noed at the daily briefing.
Continuing, President Obama’s spokesman noted “So it reflects what we have often said, which is that so many of these al Qaeda affiliates that are operating, when they carry out acts of terror, that there are far more victims of their acts of terror that are Muslim than are anybody else.”
Regarding militant activities on the Pakistani soil, he said the U.S. has been expressing concern about some areas where the militants operated, and targeted Americans based in Afghanistan.
“And there has been recently additional steps that have been taken by the Pakistani government to try to root out the extremists that are operating in that area.
And we certainly would welcome those steps.
But those are steps that are ultimately taken by the Pakistani government because they recognize that the extremist threat that exists in their country poses a significant threat to their citizens.”
Meanwhile, addressing the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Secretary of State John Kerry paid tribute to the memory of Army Public School Peshawar victims.
He described to the international audience some excruciating details of the carnage that took place in Peshawar.
“No matter the input, this kind of atrocity can really never be rationalized; these kinds of actions can never be excused; and they have to be opposed with every fiber of our being.
They have to be stopped,” he said referring to a spate of recent atrocities committed by terrorists in different parts of the world including the attack on Peshawar school.
Kerry called for a right approach to fighting the militant mindset.
“If we’re going to successfully combat violent extremism, we better understand all of the factors, because we can’t change minds without knowing what’s in them.”
Speaking in the wake of this month’s attacks in Paris, Kerry also cautioned the gathering of world leaders against shortsighted moves and Islamophobia.
He pointed out that while fighting terrorists the biggest error the world could make would be to blame Muslims collectively for crimes that the overwhelming majority of Muslims oppose and crimes that Islam utterly rejects.
“Religions don’t require adherence to raze villages and blow up people.
It’s individuals with a distorted and an even ignorant interpretation of religion, who do that, abetted by networks of individuals who have a different agenda and who incite and finance those actions.
And we will certainly not defeat our foes by vilifying potential partners or by suppressing the very freedoms that terrorists try to destroy.
Unless we direct our energies in the right direction, we may very well fuel the very fires that we want to put out,” Kerry said, according a to a transcript of his remarks.