The top U.S. military officer is urging a cautious approach to confronting an increasingly bold Islamic extremist insurgency in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border area.

Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Pentagon news conference that now is the time for teamwork and calm.

Mullen said Friday he remains convinced that the Pakistani government understands the nature of the insurgent threat inside its borders and is willing to work with Washington on finding a solution.

He said that some of the best solutions may not be military in nature. He mentioned that Pakistan faces deep economic problems that make the insurgent threat harder to defeat.