Published: Thu, December 07, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

U.S. defense secretary meets Pakistan's prime minister

U.S. defense secretary meets Pakistan's prime minister

Sources claimed that the meeting was held in a cordial environment and the USA side also acknowledged Pakistan's concerns regarding the Indian military presence in Afghanistan and even hinted at playing some role in the resolution of disputes between the two South Asian nuclear states, including the core issue of Kashmir.

Similarly, he said, there is common ground between Afghanistan and Pakistan, because there are terrorist groups that try to move back and forth, that do move back and forth in order to live in one and attack in the other, that sort of thing.

A day after US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis' meeting with Pakistan's officials in Islamabad, Foreign Minister, Khawaja Asif, said that Islamabad had been assured that there would be no military role for India in Afghanistan.

According to the state-run Radio Pakistan, they discussed different aspects of Pak-US relations especially the regional security situation.

Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif has said Pakistan was revisiting his foreign policy according to the prevailing worldwide scenario, besides hinting at a major shift in the policy.

The support was reportedly offered during a meeting with Mattis during his visit to Islamabad.

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Pakistan is confident that the United States will amend its South Asia strategy announced by President Trump in August this year. "China lives next to us and we have a common wall. I believe that we work hard on finding the common ground, and then we work together, so that's the approach I want to take".

A U.S. defence official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Mattis's conversations had been "straightforward" and specific.

Mattis said there is "always an urgency to something" when 39 nations plus Afghanistan have their troops in the midst of a long war, where causalities are being taken.

"There's people who are living below the poverty line in both those countries".

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Tuesday chaired the corps commanders conference at General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi. Bajwa appreciated Mattis' understanding of the underlying issues and said that Pakistan does not require anything from the U.S. but understanding, the statement said.

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