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Pakistan desires strong ties with US: FM Qureshi

NEW YORK: Foreign Minister (FM) Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that Pakistan wants strong ties with the United States (US).

Addressing the session of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, FM Qureshi said both Pakistan and the US have the ingredient to build a more substantive and broad-based relationship between the two countries.

The FM said Pakistan wants to leverage its connectivity infrastructure including China Pakistan Economic Corridor to enhance regional trade and economic integration.

The foreign minister said Pakistan and the US came together to decimate al Qaida core leadership and architecture. He said both remain an important partner and Pakistan, sitting at the crossroads of South and Central Asia, is a market of over 220 million people.

He said Pakistan has shifted its focus from geo-politics to geo-economics and can work with the US through the development Finance cooperation to general economic activity on Pakistan and Afghanistan border which will help the war-hit-country Afghanistan.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi said an economically strong Pakistan can play a vital role for prosperity in the region that has suffered through 40 years of war in Afghanistan.

He said Prime Minister Imran Khan has warned the world that Indian illegal actions would not silence Kashmiris from the just struggle to self-determination.

Earlier, talking to US Special Representative for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, on the sidelines of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, Shah Mahmood Qureshi had reiterated Pakistan’s continued support for the establishment of a broad-based and inclusive government in Kabul.

Discussing the evolving situation in Afghanistan, the two leaders had agreed to work together for a peaceful and inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan.

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