Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Pakistan is engaged in fierce battles against terrorism to root out the menace as the terrorists are threatening to rip apart the fabric of society and undermine the Asian region's development prospects. Speaking at the 16th ministerial meeting at Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum here in Thailand on Thursday, he said, "Pakistan is engaged in the fiercest battles against terrorism. We are waging this war to save the 'soul' of Pakistan." He said, "Our region may be in the spotlight currently due to terrorism and militancy, the fact remains that this region has much more to offer to the world in terms of its economic and human potential." "Perhaps no country has suffered more in human and material terms than Pakistan due to war on terror. Since 2001, Pakistan has been subjected to more than 6000 terrorist attacks. We are still hosting nearly 3 million Afghan refugees," he explained. He expressed gratefulness for the assistance international community has extended. The Friends of Democratic Pakistan Forum came forward to pledge over $5 billion in Tokyo in April this year. "We are pursuing a comprehensive strategy of dialogue, development and deterrence. We are building domestic consensus and people's ownership of the struggle against terrorism. This approach is bearing fruit. International community can assist Pakistan in implementing this strategy through building our capacity," Qureshi said. The Foreign Minister said Pakistan values its association with the ASEAN Regional Forum. The vision statement proposed to be adopted by 16th ARF is a timely initiative and will help chart the future course and ARF needs to achieve its stated objectives, he added. He said turmoil in various regions, ongoing conflicts, unresolved disputes, terrorism and militancy, food, energy and financial crisis, environmental degradation, natural disasters, inadequacies of the global trading and financial system, the so-called civilisation divide, are serious challenges the world is confronted with. On the positive side we can discern a healthy trend towards deepening regional integration, development of co-operative mechanisms to deal with issues of peace and security, acceptance of the need to confront terrorism and a growing realisation for reform of the present global financial and economic architecture, he remarked. "The challenges faced by us are overwhelming. We see an inability to address festering conflicts, high level of military spendings, stockpiling of arms, environmental and health challenges. Global rules or mechanisms established to deal with issues of peace, security and development have become inadequate or weak."