WASHINGTON: The United States on Thursday said that Pakistan is an important partner in various fronts and both the countries have shared interests in peace and stability in Afghanistan.
During the weekly press briefing, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price while replying to a query about Pakistan’s influence in bringing the Afghan Taliban, at this crucial juncture, to the table in Doha said that Pakistan and the US have shared interests, adding that Pakistan has been helpful when it comes to this shared interest in Afghanistan.
The spokesman said interests of the United States and Pakistan go well beyond that and include broader counterterrorism interests and the people-to-people ties that unite our two countries.
He said all of Afghanistan’s neighbors need to play a constructive role in helping to bring durable political settlement as well as a comprehensive ceasefire.
He said the United States is going to work very closely to ensure that Afghanistan’s neighbors play constructive role in Afghanistan.
He said that the US has encouraged Pakistan to be a constructive partner when it comes to Afghanistan as they strive to bring semblance of peace and security. “We have – and this goes over the course of successive administrations now – encouraged Pakistan to be a constructive partner when it comes to Afghanistan and our collective efforts to bring about some semblance of peace and security there.
“Pakistan has been helpful when it comes to this shared interest. Absolutely not,” says PM to allowing US bases in Pakistan post Afghanistan withdrawal.
“Our shared interests go well beyond that: broader counter-terrorism interests as well, not to mention the people-to-people ties that unite our two countries,” Price added.
When asked about Prime Minister Imran Khan’s decision to refuse the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) bases in Pakistan, the spokesperson replied that all of Afghanistan’s neighbours need to play a constructive role in helping to bring “about a just and durable political settlement as well as a comprehensive ceasefire”.
“… what we know to be true is that all of Afghanistan’s neighbors need to play a constructive role in helping to bring about a just and durable political settlement as well as a comprehensive ceasefire,” said Price.
“For far too long, some of Afghanistan’s neighbours have not played that role. They had been happy to let – content, I should say – to let other countries take responsibility. And right now, we have made clear that we are going to be working very closely to ensure that Afghanistan’s neighbours do play that constructive role, knowing that it will be a necessary ingredient to what I think we all collectively hope to see in Afghanistan.”
Last month, the PM had made it clear that he will not allow any US bases in Pakistan. “There is no way we are going to allow any bases or any sort of action from Pakistani territory into Afghanistan. Absolutely not,” the PM said to HBO Axios’ National Political Correspondent Jonathan Swan. In his speech at the National Assembly, the PM said that Pakistan will never compromise on its sovereignty, adding that the country can never be a partner in conflict with the US.