Published: Thu, December 07, 2017
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

US Assured Pakistan Of 'No Indian Military Role In Afghanistan'

US Assured Pakistan Of 'No Indian Military Role In Afghanistan'

However, Pakistan signaled its willingness to crack down on all militant outfits based on actionable intelligence from the US.

The army chief was also recently in Saudi Arabia as the first meeting of the defence ministers of countries involved in the Saudi-led Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition (IMCTC) was held last Sunday.

Accompanied by senior officials from the USA defense and state departments, Mattis met Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and army chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa, separately, during his day-long visit, the second tour of a high profile US official in less than a month.

"He agreed with Secretary Mattis that both Pakistan and the USA have common stakes in securing peace and security in Afghanistan for the long term stability of the broader region", the statement further said.

The visit, Mattis's first as defence secretary, came days after the United States voiced concerns following a Pakistani court's decision to free one of the alleged masterminds of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, and as the USA pushes its longtime ally to do more to combat insurgents who allegedly use bases in Pakistan's tribal belt to target North Atlantic Treaty Organisation troops in Afghanistan.

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

When asked if he would "prod" Islamabad to take more action, he replied: "That's not the way I deal with issues".

"But at the same time, as the (Pakistan Army Chief) General (Qamar Javed Bajwa) has said, he wants no havens for terrorists anywhere, so we will work together and we'll find that common ground, if we have the will to".

Mattis recognised Pakistan's sacrifices in the war against terrorism. "We have eliminated safe havens from Pakistan's soil but are prepared to look into the possibility of miscreants exploiting Pakistan's hospitality to the Afghan Refugees to the detriment of our Afghan brothers", it said.

Mattis' brief visit to Islamabad comes a week after a hardline Pakistani Islamist group called off nationwide protests after the government met its demand that a minister accused of blasphemy resign.

Like this: