US Acting Deputy Secretary of State Mr. Tom Shannon called on Finance Minister Mr. Muhammad Ishaq Dar at Pakistan Embassy Washington DC today. The Finance Minister, who is visiting the United States to participate in the spring meetings of the World Bank and IMF, is utilizing his stay in Washington to engage the US officials for exchange of views on important bilateral matters and regional issues.
Mr. Dar conveyed to the US official that Pakistan would continue to make efforts to build on the already existing mutually beneficial elements in the bilateral relationship in the days and months ahead to further solidify the relations between the two countries during the Trump Administration.“We would continue to work for a relationship based on mutual respect and mutuality of interests”, observed Mr Dar.
Reiterating Pakistan’s strong resolve to combat terrorism and extremism in the country, the Finance Minister briefed the Acting Deputy Secretary about Pakistan’s sustained counter terror operations all over Pakistan. “We are conducting these security operations with the unwavering belief that ridding the society of the scourge of terrorists and extremists is in Pakistan’s national interest. People of Pakistan are backingour security forces in their operations as a result of the national consensus achieved by the people and the institutions of Pakistan. There is no other country which has sacrificed more in human life and material terms than Pakistan in the global fight against terrorism,” conveyed Mr. Dar.
He told the US official that the economic turnaround in the country was an indication of the improved security situation as well as a result of the highly liberal economic policies pursued by the government of Pakistan. He assured the US official that the Government would not relent the pressure on the elements engaged in terrorism and extremism in the country till the objectives set out in the National Action Plan for secure and prosperous Pakistan were achieved.
The Finance Minister welcomed the US National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. McMaster’s recent visit to Pakistan, terming it a strong and timely indication of the US’s desire to partner with Pakistan in achieving the common objectives of peace and security in Afghanistan and the larger South Asia region.
Highlighting the concerns in Pakistan over the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan, Mr. Dar observed that the only long-term resolution of the problems in Afghanistan was politicaland use of military means should only be to facilitate an Afghan owned and Afghan led reconciliation process.
Mr. Tom Shannon conveyed to the Finance Minister the Trump Administration’s commitment to engage Pakistan for a broad based bilateral relationship and to partner with Pakistan to achieve regional peace and security in South Asia.
Washington DC, 24 April, 2017
April 24, 2017