The Obama Administration today said Pakistan needs to expand its counterterrorism operations from the Afghan border to Punjab.The principal problem (that prevents the two countries from holding peace talks) is that of terrorism, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, told media. It is important for Pakistanis to continue the important steps that they have taken against terrorism in Swat and South Waziristan and against some members of Taliban, he said. They need to extend that fight to the groups that are based in Punjab such as LeT that are attacking not only India, but also the United States, and potentially could attack Pakistan itself, Mr. Blake said. This is the message that has been conveyed to Pakistan during Blakes recent visit to the country. I think, it is the message that the Pakistanis themselves feel is important to do. They consistently said that they do not want to see terrorism emanating from their soil, he said. I think progress towards reining in the activities of the LeT and JaisheMohammed and other such groups, would have a very significant impact on bilateral, India and Pakistani ties, Mr. Blake said. We hope to see progress by Pakistan to address these things, which we think would be in Pakistans own interests and it would also have great benefit to improve relationship between India and Pakistan, Mr. Blake said in response to a question. Mr. Blake, the Obama Administrations pointsman for South Asia, also welcomed the recent meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gillani in Thimphu on the margins of the SAARC Summit in Bhutan, wherein the two leaders agreed to resume peace talks at the level of Foreign Ministers.