Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Pakistan apprises USA to address concerns to move forward: FO

Pakistan apprises USA to address concerns to move forward: FO

Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal, while talking to a private news channel on Saturday, said that there was a need to find common ground in diplomacy, for resolving issues between the two countries.

Votel, who spoke to General Qamar Javed Bajwa by telephone "over the week", also said that the "on-going turbulence" around a tweet by Donald Trump suspending aid to the country was "a temporary phase", according to the statement.

Some U.S. and Afghan officials anxious that Pakistan would retaliate by ceasing to share intelligence or raising the costs for U.S. -led North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces to use Pakistani air and land corridors into Afghanistan. COAS said that Pakistan shall continue its honest counter terrorism efforts even without United States financial support in accordance with our national interest and shall remain committed to bring it to its logical conclusion along with other stake holders.

The dialogue comes a week after the U.S announced its suspension of security assistance to Pakistan for failing to take "decisive action" against Taliban militants targeting USA personnel in neighboring Afghanistan.

Trump has been less charitable towards Pakistan.

Speaking to the US CENTCOM commander Gen. Joseph Votel, the Pakistani Army Chief said "Pakistan is fully aware of US concerns on activities of Afghan nationals in Pakistan and we are already undertaking multiple actions through Operation "Radd ul Fasaad" to deny any residual capacity to terrorists of all hue and colour for which return of Afghan Refugees is an essential prerequisite".

During the call, Votel told Bajwa that Washington is concerned about Afghans using Pakistan as a staging ground for attacks against the USA inside Afghanistan.

Pakistan was initially fearful that Trump would launch a strike in Pakistan - similar to the secret 2011 raid that captured Osama bin Laden outside Islamabad - and put its forces on alert the day the aid suspension was announced. Also in question is nearly $1 billion of US military equipment that has allowed Pakistan access to advanced military technology. But one Pakistani official who spoke on condition of anonymity said his government had breathed "a sigh of relief" as their USA counterparts played down Trump's comments. He added that USA s "didn't disown Trump's tweets, but they also found it tough to explain how they would translate [into] policymaking".

The move, first announced by Trump in a New Year's Day tweet, sparked indignation in Pakistan, which has long denied the USA accusations of militant support, and accused Washington of dismissing the sacrifices it has made in the war on extremism.

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