ISLAMABAD The US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Holbrooke, on Thursday assured political leadership of Pakistan that his country would provide all possible assistance to Pakistan in strengthening of democracy, security, socio-economic development and welfare of its people. This he said while talking to President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani and PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif during his separate meetings with them here. He said United States valued Pakistans desire for regional peace and lauded the sacrifices made by the people, the armed forces and other civilian law enforcing agencies of Pakistan in the war against militants. President Zardari while talking to the US envoy appreciated US support for Pakistans security and economic development and said that Pakistan valued its partnership with the United States. We need to work more closely in order to broaden the spectra of cooperation for the pursuits of our common goals, he said and added that Pakistan looked forward to high-level strategic dialogue between the two countries next month in Washington. He urged the United States to consider the early repatriation of Dr Aafia Siddiqui in line with the prisoners exchange treaty, adding that Pakistan would provide legal assistance to Aafia during her trial in the US court. The President hoped that ROZs legislation should be expedited and counterproductive labour provision be softened. He also emphasised on early reimbursement of arrears of CSF of over 1.5 billion dollars which was rising every month. He said that US-led allies should help Pakistani government so that it could live up to the expectations of its people. President Zardari underscored the need for the removal of Pakistan from the list of countries whose nationals had been designated for screening at the US airports and repatriation of Aafia Siddiqi could help improve the US image in Pakistan. The President also said that Pakistan was committed to the peace and stability of the region and would welcome efforts for restoring peace and stability in Afghanistan. He said that Afghanistan had remained a war zone for long and now it was time for the international community to synergise their efforts for restoration of peace, stability and prosperity of a war-torn country. Pakistan would complement Coalitions effort in this regard and would provide all assistance for capacity building of the Afghan institutions. Talking to Richard Holbrooke, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said that a balanced and indiscriminate US approach in this region could help improve the United States image amongst Pakistanis. Gilani said that US assistance to Pakistan should be need-based and in projects which had a direct impact on the lives of people in Pakistan. The Prime Minister welcomed the high-level contacts between the two countries at political, parliamentary, military and economic levels and stressed the need for their continuity in order to increase strategic ties. About Pakistan-India relations and the forthcoming Foreign Secretary level talks, the Prime Minister said that Pakistan was committed to peace in the region and in this context his government was making sincere efforts for resumption of the Composite Dialogue Process with India but regretted that the vibes emanating from the other side had not been encouraging. The relations between India and Pakistan, he added, should not become hostage to the activities of terrorists who were a common enemy. He stressed upon the need for a lasting peace in the region, both countries must address core issues including Kashmir and water disputes. Meanwhile, PML-N Mian Nawaz Sharif has urged the United States to use its influence for resumption of meaningful, comprehensive and result-oriented talks between Pakistan and India. Talking with Richard Holbrooke at the Punjab House, Nawaz emphasised the need for meaningful and result-oriented composite dialogue process with India. He said that peace could not be established in the region without solution of the Kashmir dispute in line with the UN plebiscite and according to aspirations of Kashmiri people. Nawaz also dwelt at length on the growing concern in Pakistan, at Indias efforts to divert and deny Pakistan its rightful share of the waters, from rivers allocated to her under the Indus Water Basin Treaty. We have enough problem between us and India should refrain from creating another crisis, he added. The PML-N chief also raised the issue of Dr Aafia Siddiquis detention with US envoy and demanded her immediate release. He also emphasised the importance of US investment in Pakistan, especially in power, energy and agriculture sectors. Appreciating the concerns of Nawaz Sharif, Holbrooke briefed him about the efforts of the US to enhance the capacity of power generation in Pakistan and improve the other energy related projects. Agencies add: Pakistan on Thursday raised fresh concerns to the United States about knock-on instability caused by a major US-led anti-Taliban assault in neighbouring Afghanistan. Prime Minister Gilani raised the matter with Holbrooke. About 15,000 Afghan, US and NATO troops are conducting Operation Mushtarak in southern Afghanistan against about 400 to 1,000 Taliban fighters in what has been billed as the biggest assault since the 2001 US-led invasion. The offensive is targeting a major drug-producing area in Helmand province, which borders Balochistan. Gilani expressed hope that Pakistans concerns on account of spill over of refugees and militants from Helmand into southwestern Balochistan and the northwest will be kept in view by the US and ISAF forces, his office said. He called for enhanced coordination and cooperation with Pakistans armed forces to deal with the situation. Pakistan and US are scheduled to hold talks later this year to discuss and bolster cooperation further in security and counterterrorism. The Prime Minister stressed the need for fast-tracking of dialogue on energy sector to mitigate the power shortage in the country. He hoped that the projects, identified in the US strategy for regional stabilisation on Pakistan and Afghanistan, for helping Pakistan to overcome the present power shortages would be implemented on priority basis. He noted with concern that the delay in disbursement of CSF and the release of the appropriated amount under the Kerry-Lugar Bill to Pakistan were adversely affecting Pakistans overall economy. Holbrooke who arrived in Pakistan after visiting Kabul briefed the Prime Minister on the Afghan political situation and US, ISAF and Afghan forces operation against militants and terrorists in Helmand province. He underscored the desire of his government to work in coordination with the government and armed forces to defeat their common enemy in and outside Pakistan. Holbrooke acknowledged the need for immediate resumption of reimbursement of Coalition Support Fund to Pakistan as now those irritants like visa issues have been removed and promised to fast-track release of funds approved under Kerry-Lugar Bill. Defence Minister Ch Ahmad Mukhtar, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Nawabzada Malik Amad Khan, Senator Sughra Imam, US Ambassador Ms Anne W Patterson, secretaries foreign affairs, interior, acting defence secretary and other senior officials were also present in the meeting. Briefing the media, Spokesperson former Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the President said that Pakistan had paid a heavy price in terms of both human and material losses in neutralising the threat of militancy. We now look forward to our partners in this war to assist us in overcoming our difficulties so that the goal of democratically elected government to meet the expectations of the people of Pakistan could be achieved, he added. The President said that Pakistan needed trade and market access for its product in order to set its economy on the path of stability and prosperity. He urged the visiting delegation that the US assistance to Pakistan be channelled through the government in order to ensure transparency and accountability in its utilisation. Talking about war against terror and its implications for the people of Pakistan, the President said the Government had undertaken an elaborate programme for the rehabilitation and resettlement of the displaced persons at a cost of $ 2.5 billion. It was shared responsibility of the international community to augment our efforts in this regard by providing necessary assistance, the President remarked. Farhatullah Babar said that President Zardari underlined the need to work further for enhancing the level of trust between the people of both the countries, and urged the US administration to review the new screening policy, and take out from the list of countries whose citizens were proposed to be subjected to new screening regime. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke thanked the President for meeting the delegation and said that the government and the people of US highly appreciated the sacrifices made by the people, the armed forces and other civilian law enforcing agencies of Pakistan in the war against militants.