Page last updated at 15:35 GMT, Friday, 28 August 2009 16:35 UK

Pakistan's leader in No 10 talks

President Zardari, his daughter and Gordon Brown
Mr Brown pledged support for Pakistan's security efforts

Gordon Brown and Pakistan's president Asif Ali Zardari have met in Downing Street to discuss the security situation in Afghanistan.

After two months of heavy casualties, the death toll of British personnel since 2001 reached 207 on Thursday.

A Downing Street spokesman said Mr Brown "made clear his support" for Pakistan's "intensified action" against the Taliban.

Tackling extremism in its border areas was a top priority for the UK, he said.

Strong bond

Mr Brown has said 75% of terrorist plots against Britain originate in parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan and has pledged a stronger relationship with Islamabad, working on counter-terrorism.

Speaking after Friday's meeting, a No 10 spokesman said the two leaders had "reinforced" the "strong bond" between the countries and Mr Brown had reiterated a commitment to provide £665m in support over four years for Pakistan's counter-terrorism efforts.

About half of the money would be spent in the troubled border regions with Afghanistan, he added, on improving governance, economic development and "when necessary" appropriate military pressure.

Mr Brown also pledged to provide textbooks for schoolchildren in the border areas and support 300,000 girls from poor families attending secondary school.

The spokesman added: "As we have said before our highest priority in Pakistan is to work with the Pakistani government to tackle the threat of violent extremism in its border areas with Afghanistan - a threat which affects both Pakistan's security and that of the UK.

"The Pakistan government and the Pakistan army are already taking intensified action against the Taliban and the prime minister made clear his support."



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