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US urges Pakistan to ‘Do More’

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US urged Pakistan to do more to combat terrorism, Pentagon Chief Spokesperson Dana W. White said on March 4, 2018 at news briefing in Washington. She said, “This is an inflection point and this is an opportunity and Pakistan has an opportunity to do more, they’ve been victims of terrorism. So, we’ll look forward to continue to work with them to see where there are opportunities.”

In order to improve US-Pakistan ties, the US has reminded Pakistan that war on terror has reached at an inflection point and this situation should be used as an opportunity to defeat terrorism.

Earlier, a Senior Director for South and Central Asia at the National Security Council of US, Ms. Lisa Curtis visited Pakistan in February, 2018 in order to fix the strains in US-Pakistan bilateral ties and to avoid a complete breakdown of the increasingly dysfunctional relationship. On the other hand, Indo-US strong strategic partnership is shifting the balance of power in favor of India in South Asia. It is also a contributory factor in deteriorated US-Pak relations.

Pakistan has to be present in every initiative taken by the US to maintain peace in Afghanistan. Eventually, Pak-US relations may flourish in future. Moreover, Pakistan adores its enhanced relations with Russia and China but it cannot afford to severe relations with the US also.

India is also increasing its influence in Afghanistan with US support. Discussing Afghanistan’s security situation, Ms. White acknowledged Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s initiative to hold peace talks with the Taliban and appreciated Pakistan’s weight behind this initiative. She reiterated that the Taliban has to abandon terror and violence. She asserted that the United States will continue to consult New Delhi, not only about “India’s very important role” in Afghanistan but also on other issues that go beyond the South Asian region.

Official sources confirmed that Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua will have a series of meetings both at the White House and the State Department and she will also address think-tank experts at the US Institute of Peace during her short stay of two-days in Washington. These exchanges of visits may help to normalize US-Pak relations. Ms. Janjua is likely to have another meeting with Ms. Curtis. The two met in Islamabad where Ms. Curtis expressed the desire to “move toward a new relationship” with Pakistan.

Read more: James Mattis warns Pakistan; ‘Do more’ or face consequences

Acting Assistant Secretary of State, Alice Wells has also explained in a recent interview to Voice of America (VOA) that this new approach of the US is assuring that it does not want to sever its relations with Pakistan. Simultaneously, Washington is not seeking the revival of the old relationship, which made Pakistan its key ally in the Cold War as well as in the war against terror.

In order to improve US-Pakistan ties, the US has reminded Pakistan that war on terror has reached at an inflection point and this situation should be used as an opportunity to defeat terrorism.

US may not want to lose Pakistan entirely in order to downplay the threat of terrorism from the region because the latter remained a front line state in fighting against terror outfits. Washington views India more reliable strategic ally for countering threats from Russia and China and in the development of Afghanistan. Moreover, the US perceives the growing influence of China, Russia in South Asia including Afghanistan as a greater threat.

Read more: It is “we will do more” vs “we will inflict you…

The US must focus on its political will to keep peace and stability in Afghanistan by bringing all regional countries on one platform. On the other hand, the Taliban must accept Ghani’s recent invitation to hold unconditional peace talks. This is the only solution to end 17 years long war in Afghanistan. In this regard, Pakistan has to be present in every initiative taken by the US to maintain peace in Afghanistan. Eventually, Pak-US relations may flourish in future. Moreover, Pakistan adores its enhanced relations with Russia and China but it cannot afford to severe relations with the US also.


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