US State Department on Wednesday opened up another pandora box by differentiating from Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s statement that dispelled news of ‘do more’ mantra being rehashed by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in his meetings.
A statement issued by the US State Department said that Secretary Pompeo, during his meeting with Pakistani leadership, highlighted the importance of the Pakistan-US relationship, and underscored areas of shared interest, such as the expansion of two-way trade and commercial ties.
It further stated that the Secretary emphasized the important role Pakistan could play in bringing about a negotiated peace in Afghanistan, and conveyed the need for Pakistan to take sustained and decisive measures against terrorists and militants threatening regional peace and stability.
“During his meeting with Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Pompeo welcomed the smooth transition of power to a new civilian government stressing the importance of strong democratic institutions and also expressed hope for deeper counter terrorism cooperation between our nations,” the statement added.
While meeting with Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, he discussed the potential for the United States and Pakistan to work together to advance joint priorities, including regional peace and stability and emphasized the value of strong people-to-people ties between our nations, built on decades of cultural and educational exchanges.
Congratulating the Prime Minis-ter on the formation of his government, the Secretary welcomed the further strengthening of civilian institutions. Secretary Pompeo also highlighted the importance of the US-Pakistan relationship, and underscored areas of shared interest such as the expansion of two-way trade and commercial ties.
Meanwhile talking to media at Noor Khan Airbase, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that peaceful solution to Afghanistan is needed to be searched which is in the interest of Pakistan and the United States.
He said that during his meetings with Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, he discussed matters pertaining to new government’s policies and improving relations between Us and Pakistan.
Readout of @SecPompeo & @thejointstaff's meetings w/ PM @ImranKhanPTI, FM Qureshi, & Gen. Bajwa. The Secretary emphasized #Pakistan’s important role in negotiated peace in #Afghanistan & need for sustained, decisive measures against terrorists & militants threatening the region. pic.twitter.com/o1YouVt0Z3— Heather Nauert (@statedeptspox) September 5, 2018
Pompeo said that strengthening relations of US and Pakistan in economy, business and trade sectors were also discussed during the meetings.
Responding to a question regarding any assurance to resume Pakistan’s military assistance, he said that we need to move forward, adding that there are still many things to discuss.
“We need to work together to advance joint priorities,” he said and hoped this meeting would be a base to move forward.
“We have given a clear message that this is time to work together on shared interests. We have talked a lot and signed agreements in the past but to no avail.”
The US secretary of state said that an agreement was reached during meetings with Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on many things take practical steps.