Pakistan produced results in war on terror, PM tells Tillerson | Pakistan Today

Pakistan produced results in war on terror, PM tells Tillerson

ISLAMABAD: US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Tuesday called on Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at the Prime Minister House and discussed Pakistan’s counter-terrorism efforts with him.

Tillerson’s visit, his first to Pakistan since becoming secretary of state, follows on the heels of an unannounced stop in Afghanistan, where the top American diplomat reiterated America’s commitment to the country.

During the meeting, the prime minister reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to the war on terror, saying that Pakistan had produced results in its fight against militants. He also told the American dignitary that Pakistan looked forward to “moving ahead with the US and building a tremendous relationship”.

Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Director General Lt General Naveed Mukhtar, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, Defence Minister Khurram Dastgir and other senior government officials were also present at the meeting.

Tillerson said that Pakistan was an important US ally in the region.

“(Pakistan is) important regionally to our joint goals of providing peace and security to the region and providing opportunity for greater economic relationship as well,” Tillerson said.

Tillerson was received quietly by a mid-level Foreign Office official at the military airport in Rawalpindi and was then transported in a convoy of Land Cruisers amid tight security to the US Embassy in the Diplomatic Enclave, before the scheduled meetings.

Tillerson, who is on a tour to regional countries, is the first high-ranking American official to travel to Islamabad after Trump unveiled his strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia in August.

The new policy – which envisages greater emphasis on the use of force and points a finger at Pakistan for “not doing enough” against certain militant groups – has caused strains in ties between Pakistan and the United States.

Though the recent rescue by Pakistan Army of an American-Canadian couple somewhat eased simmering tensions between the two countries, Tillerson repeated Trump’s rhetoric after a meeting with the Afghan leadership in Kabul on Monday.

“We have made some very specific requests of Pakistan in order for them to take action to undermine the support the Taliban receive and other terrorist organisations receive,” he told reporters at the Bagram Airfield, America’s largest base in Afghanistan.

Tillerson is expected to fly to India after his meetings in Islamabad. Interestingly, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who Tillerson met in Kabul, rushed to New Delhi on Monday for meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and foreign minister Sushma Swaraj.

Trump’s strategy envisages a greater role for India in Afghanistan –something that Pakistan vehemently opposes citing security concerns. Pakistani officials have repeatedly said that Indian spy agency, RAW, is using the Afghan soil to destabilize Pakistan through terrorism.

Tillerson’s visit comes weeks after the Trump’s policy announcement on South Asia and is expected to be followed by a visit by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis later this year.



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2 Comments

  1. attron said:

    Do-little-here-n -there buy more time to keep the ‘good-terrorist’ safe n use it against the neighbors. Those days are over, ‘Pakistani-shenanigan’ is exposed, no one will come to your rescue ot even your ‘all-weather’ friend this time!

  2. Dr.M.M.Khan said:

    What a foolish diplomatic snub to the Secretary of State . He was received by a mid Level Foreign Office official! Why bite the very hand that feeds us miltarily and otherwise. Political differnces should not lead to snubs. Yes we entered into war on terror under duress but our efforts have lacked consistency and lack of direction. Our own Govt. is weak and lets the terrorists of our own liking move around with impunity. US is using both it’s political and muscular clout to Pakistan to do more. Our myopic foreign policy just thinks of tomorrow and not the day after. It has entered a reactive mode. It is not only US that regards Pakistan w
    ith suspician. It is the whole world. Those days are gone when the President of Pakistan used to be received at the camp David by the President of US.

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