ISLAMABAD -The US government is carrying out a periodical Congressional assessment of Pakistan's post-February 18 general elections situation with special reference to war on terror to further cement the bilateral cooperation between the two friendly countries. A two-member Congressional delegation, currently on official visit to Pakistan, held separate meetings on Sunday with Pakistan's top civil and military leadership including President Pervez Musharraf, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parevz Kayani and discussed whole range of issues of mutual concerns. The delegation, comprising Senator Levin and Senator Casey, also held separate meetings with PPP Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari and PML-N parliamentary leader in the National Assembly Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. "The US Senators have discussed the whole range of issues of mutual concerns including the terrorist threat which the US government regards as the biggest concern," US Embassy Press AttachT Dr Elizabeth O. Colton told TheNation. Ms Colton brushed aside the impression that the Congressional team was on a special mission to Pakistan, saying that there was nothing unusual at all about the visit. "In fact it is in line with the national holidays in USA and the sole purpose of these visits was to take a periodical Congressional assessment of the situation in the region including Pakistan," Ms Colton said, adding other US officials in the course will also be visiting Pakistan. When pressed, she said that other issues discussed in these meetings were Pakistan government's peace accords with militants in the border areas and economic situation in the country. The US Senators also discussed as to how Washington could help Pakistan to overcome its pressing economic problems as well as the US support to the newly elected government. According to the official sources, President Pervez Musharraf on Sunday emphasized the importance of enhanced market access for Pakistan in US to help build the relationship on sound and sustainable economic footing. The President was talking to US Senators Carl Levin and Robert Casey who called on him in Rawalpindi. Pakistan-US relations and matters related to counter-terrorism were discussed in the meeting. The President also underscored the need for accelerated progress on initiatives like Reconstruction Opportunity Zones (ROZs), Frontier Corps (FC) and the FATA Development Plan. The US Senators expressed their support for close cooperation between Pakistan and the United States and exchanged views on building the relationship on a forward-looking and long-term basis. The US Senators also exchanged views on counter-terrorism issues.  President Musharraf underlined the importance of a multi-pronged counter-terrorism strategy combining political, socio-economic development, and security tracks. Senator Carl Levin (Democrat-Michigan) chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee. Senator Casey is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani in his meeting with the US Congressional team said Pakistan accords high priority to its close, cooperative and strategic relationship with the United States that covers diplomatic, political, economic, defence, security and social fields. This relationship, the Prime Minister said would be further strengthened with the induction of the popularly elected civilian government in the country. US Ambassador in Pakistan, Ms Anne Patterson also attended the meeting. Welcoming the US Senators, the Prime Minister thanked them for their support in restoring democracy in Pakistan. Pakistan, he said would be keen to have more Congressional delegations to visit the country in order to seek more depth to the relationship between the two countries. He said there is a need to establish more people to people contacts between the two countries to promote better understanding and dispel misperception about each other. The Prime Minister said that moderate and mainstream political forces emerged victorious in the February 18 elections all over the country including the NWFP and tribal areas. He said that the elected government is committed to providing a democracy dividend to the people in terms of poverty alleviation and socio-economic development. The Prime Minister said that international community especially the US should help us in providing greater market access for our products in the US in the development of our human resource and cooperation in science and technology, technical skills and social sectors. He said after the restoration of democracy in Pakistan, all hurdles, in way of providing assistance to Pakistan by the US, should also be removed. The Prime Minister said that terrorism and extremism are a major threat to world peace and Pakistan is fully committed to combating the scourge of extremism and terrorism. "We are pursuing a holistic counter-terrorism strategy combining political, socio-economic and security track", he said and added that this will enable Pakistan to engage those elements who desire peace, lay down arms and join the mainstream political activities and isolate militants and terrorist. He said that Pakistan will never compromise and negotiate with terrorists. The Prime Minister said it is not correct that Pakistan has withdrawn its troops from the bordering areas. He said that security forces will remain deployed to meet any threat posed by terrorists. The Prime Minister emphasized the need to address the root causes of terrorism which is often triggered by a sense of deprivation, injustice and hopelessness. He said that Reconstruction Opportunities Zones (ROZs) can be of great help in creating economic opportunities in the border areas and weaning people away from extremism. He urged early approval of the draft ROZs legislation. The Prime Minister said that Pakistan is keen to prevent cross border movement on our borders on Afghanistan and has offered to fence the border and is awaiting Afghanistan's reciprocal response by installing biometric system. He said Pakistan has deployed over 100,000 troops along the borders and Afghanistan needs to increase troops on its side of the border to prevent cross border movement. The Prime Minister said a stable, peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan is clearly in Pakistan's interest as without peace in the region the vast potential for economic cooperation between South Asia, Central Asia and West Asia will stay untapped. He said Pakistan is of the view that the international community needs to do more to expedite the process of socio-economic development in Afghanistan in order to win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people. The two senators also met PPP Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zaradi at Zardai House and PML-N central leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan at Punjab House and discussed matters of mutual interests. In a late night development the US Embassy Spokesperson confirmed the arrival Sunday of two other Congressional Delegations (CODELS),Senator Russ Feingold and also another delegation comprising three members of the US House of Representatives, Congressman Adam Schiff with Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, and Congressman Wayne Gilchrest. These Congressional visits, the spokesperson said, reflect the close and important relationship between the United States and Pakistan. These visits, she said, are a normal activity during a US Congressional recess over the annual Memorial Day holiday on last Monday of May in the USA, and are among visits of several US Congressional Delegations (CODELS) scheduled to visit Pakistan this week. Monitoring Desk adds: PML-N central leader Ch Nisar Ali Khan has said he has made it clear on the US Senators that every step would be taken to restore democracy in the country and there is an impression in Pakistan that the US is one of the major hurdles in the way of judges' reinstatement, reported a private TV channel Sunday. Talking to media after meeting with the US Senators, Ch Nisar said that the Senators in the meeting raised the point as to why PML-N had left the Cabinet. He said he told them that his party was committed to the democratic system in Pakistan and it had promised the people to bring the deposed judges back in their pre-November 3 positions, but unfortunately, it could not happen, which made his party ministers leave their portfolios. Commenting on the constitutional package, Ch Nisar said it was not an appropriate solution to the issues. "Judges' restoration is the core issue, and they could be restored through an executive order," Nisar maintained.