Strategic dialogue: Building mutual trust must for Pak-US ties, says Aziz

Published: January 27, 2014
Email
US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) and Pakistan's National Security and Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz deliver opening remarks at a ministerial-level meeting at the State Department in Washington, January 27, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) and Pakistan's National Security and Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz deliver opening remarks at a ministerial-level meeting at the State Department in Washington, January 27, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON: Pakistan is ready is ready to work for transforming bilateral ties with US into a true partnership, Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and US Secretary of State John Kerry said at the beginning of the Strategic Dialogue on Monday.

Speaking at the opening of US-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue, Aziz said despite the heavy toll that we have suffered, Pakistan is ready to help in every way in supporting peace and stability in Afghanistan. However, Aziz added that in this it hopes that Pakistan’s security concerns are comprehensively addressed.

“We remain committed to facilitate a smooth and responsible US drawdown from Afghanistan and the continuing flow of the lines of communication.”

“The most important pre-requisite for strategic partnership, in my view, is mutual trust at all levels and among all key institutions. Once this trust is restored, then any unexpected incidents or accidents or disagreements over a policy or a tactic, would not be able to derail the relationship, as happened in 2011 and 2012,” said Aziz.

He further said, “there is a strong perception in Pakistan that while a lot of pressure is exerted on Pakistan on issues of concerns to India, our legitimate concerns are not conveyed to India with the same intensity”.

Pakistan is confident in the US as an ally, said Aziz.

He added that Pakistan government is committed to effectively tackle security and energy challenges. “We are hopeful that US would help in overcoming our energy challenges.”

Referring to the recently awarded GSP Plus status to Pakistan by European Union, Aziz said that we was hopeful that US would also provide Pakistan with preferential market access.

Earlier, speaking at the occasion Secretary of State John Kerry said building stronger ties with the people of Pakistan has long been his personal commitment.

“I have been pleased to work to elevate this relationship to a true partnership,” said Kerry.

“I want to commend the tough choices PM Sharif and his cabinet have made to reinvigorate Pakistan’s economy.”

The Secretary said that reinvigoration of US-Pakistan strategic dialogue is a symbol of strengthening ties across a broad spectrum of mutual interests.

“We appreciate the efforts of Pakistan govt to stand up against extremists and extremism, very few countries have suffered more at the hands of extremism than Pakistan,” said Kerry.

Ahead of the meeting, a US State Department official said in a background briefing that the dialogue covers five areas of cooperation and detailed discussions at the level of working groups on energy, defense, strategic stability, economic and finance, and law enforcement and counter-terrorism.

Leaders from both countries will work to “put together a blueprint of where we can take this relationship over the course of the next six months to a year.”

The State Department spokesperson emphasised that Washington-Islamabad cooperation spanned a wide range of issues and was not just confined to Afghanistan or the pullout of US and NATO forces from there.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (8)

  • unbelievable
    Jan 27, 2014 - 10:00PM

    With the USA getting ready to leave Afghanistan it’s apparent that the mantra that says that everything is going to be peachy once the USA departs has always been rubbish. Pakistan establishment is finally going to have to face the music – violence is expected to increase and issues of terrorist finding sanctuary in neighboring country is going to dominate the news. Your going to find out what it’s like to fight an enemy who simply retreats into a neighboring country who won’t lift a finger to fight them. You made the bed I hope you enjoy sleeping in it.Recommend

  • masialu
    Jan 27, 2014 - 10:41PM

    The question should be is America ready to help Pakistan get rid of terrorism?or is t for the media consumption and the decisions have already been made when PMLN was brought into power. Recommend

  • Madhu
    Jan 27, 2014 - 11:33PM

    Are these pakistani diplomats have no shame to beg again and again and again…….? Recommend

  • Jibran
    Jan 28, 2014 - 12:06AM

    Sartaj Aziz’s facial expressions clearly indicate how irrelevant Pakistan has become.Recommend

  • polpot
    Jan 28, 2014 - 3:56AM

    “there is a strong perception in Pakistan that while a lot of pressure is exerted on Pakistan on issues of concerns to India, our legitimate concerns are not conveyed to India with the same intensity”.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    So what are Pakistans legitimate concerns vis a vis India?
    Export of terror by state and non state actors?

    Recommend

  • Rabia
    Jan 28, 2014 - 12:15PM

    Close to 50,000 deaths, over $100 billion in losses, and growing insecurity and fear among the citizens with each passing day. These are few of the highlights of Pakistan’s involvement in the US-led war on terror that has now been fought for more than 12 years. United States relations with Pakistan have been seen as bittersweet still we have been the best at every front with US. The two nations cooperated heavily during the 80s in defeating Soviet forces in Afghanistan and more recently, in the War on Terror. Military cooperation between Pakistan and America is extremely strong. So now also there is a need to have a combined strategy in regarding Afghanistan withdrawal instead of involving India in it and making the situation more vulnerable for them.

    Recommend

  • Ali Masroor
    Jan 28, 2014 - 7:57PM

    Building mutual trust is important between the both states at this time, Pakistan has been the front line state in War on Terror and can provide safe exit to the US but the US has to make sure the stability of Pakistan as it is attached to regional stability. US should also stop the negative propaganda against the nuclear program of Pakistan.Recommend

  • Quratul-Ain
    Jan 28, 2014 - 8:01PM

    Pakistan’s current government is working seriously on resolving economic and security issues, revision of national security and economic reforms are a clear proof but with the help of the US Pakistan can make sure the regional stability. Both countries should resume the talks on serious notes as it is in benefit for achieving the national interests.Recommend

More in Pakistan