U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Pakistan to urge the country's leaders to lead the fight against extremist groups.
Kerry landed in Islamabad Monday morning on an unannounced trip to meet with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his national security adviser, according to the Associated Press. The meeting focused on ways to eliminate extremist groups especially along the border with Afghanistan.
Gen. Lloyd Austin, the chief of the U.S. Central Command, which oversees U.S. military operations in the Middle East and South Asia, accompanied Kerry.
From the Associated Press:
U.S. officials traveling with Kerry to Pakistan said Washington wants to ensure that there is a "real and sustained effort" to limit the abilities of the Pakistani and Afghan Taliban, the Haqqani Network and Laskhar e Tayyiba, which pose direct threats to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, as well as to American interests.
Kerry will also visit the school attacked by Taliban in December.
Pakistan has been on high alert since last month's attack on a Peshawar school, which killed at least 141 people, most of whom were children. Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack on the school.
Following the attack, Pakistan has stepped up the fight against extremists by reinstating the death penalty for terrorists, trying civilian terror suspects in military courts, and increasing operations in the tribal areas.
The U.S. is also involved in the efforts against extremist groups. Last month at least seven were killed in a suspected U.S. drone strike in the mountainous regions near Afghanistan.
Mary Ann Georgantopoulos is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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