Senior US senators said on Monday that the world would observe the upcoming general elections in Pakistan with great interest.
They made the statement during a meeting between a US delegation and Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and his cabinet members Hina Rabbani Khar and Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh at the PM House on Monday.
Chairman of the US Senate Armed Services Committee Senator Carl Levin headed the delegation. The American senators said relations between the two countries were on the right track.
On his part, the prime minister said his government was committed to holding free, fair and impartial elections and a smooth transition of power.
“Pakistan values its relations with the US and termed it the country’s most important economic partner,” the premier said and expressed the hope that relations between the two countries would further strengthen in the interest of the region and the world.
Ashraf said Pakistan desires peace and stability in Afghanistan post-2014 when the US is scheduled to withdraw its troops from the war-torn country.
The prime minister welcomed the re-election of US President Barack Obama, saying the move would ensure continuity in relations. He also appreciated the services of former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton, and welcomed the nomination of Senator John Kerry as her successor.
The US delegation comprised member of the Armed Services Committee Senator Jack Reed and US Ambassador Richard Olson.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 8th, 2013.