ISLAMABAD: Richard A Hoagland, Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Islamabad said on Friday that no new agreement had been signed on the reopening of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) ground supply line through Pakistan and neither was it going to happen in the future.
He was speaking to media after attending a pre-departure orientation session for the winners of Fulbright scholarships for 2013.
“We welcome Pakistan’s step to reopen the key ground supply line through its border for the NATO forces without demanding any charge. This will further rebuild the Pakistan-US relations,” said Hoagland.
“There is no need to sign a new agreement as we have resumed our relations from the point where we had left in November last year,” he added.
“This route is essential for NATO countries but also crucial for Afghanistan,” said the diplomat.
Hoagland added that it was the outcome of several months’ long intensive negations between the two countries and would strengthen trust and rebuild stalled relations.
“Both sides have agreed to work together as there are many areas to be discussed and issues to be settled,” he remarked.
Responding to a question pertaining to the serious criticism of the US media for tendering an apology on the Salala attack, the diplomat said that this was the election year in the United States and media hype is a natural thing. He added that everything which is being highlighted in the media is not true.
When he was asked whether the US has taken up the issue of Dr Shakil Afridi and the alleged harassment of US diplomats at the hands of Pakistani security officials during the recent negotiation with the Pakistani authorities, he replied saying that such things were being discussed regularly.