Washington: The US is not contemplating military operations inside Pakistan, the Pentagon has said, refuting reports in some Pakistani media amidst the Trump administration piling pressure on Islamabad to rein-in the Taliban and the Haqqani network terror groups.
Instead, the US is seeking Pakistan’s cooperation in various operations under the Trump administration’s new South Asia strategy, the Pentagon’s Joint Staff director Lt Gen Kenneth F McKenzie told reporters at a news conference yesterday.
“We actually don’t contemplate military operations inside Pakistan. On the other hand, we recognise, because the strategy is inherently regional and Pakistan is geographically located at a critical nexus of a lot of different things, Pakistan is a fundamental part of the strategy,” he said.
“Through a variety of measures, we look to gain Pakistani cooperation and assistance as we pursue operations in Afghanistan. But we are not planning to conduct military operations inside Pakistan,” he said in response to a question.
Under the new South Asia strategy, Pakistan has an opportunity to be a partner in fight against terrorism, Pentagon’s Chief Spokesperson Dana White said.
“It (Pakistan) has been a victim of terrorism, and it has supported terrorism. We are looking for Pakistan to actively join — it can do the things we need them to do to confront terrorism,” said White.
“So it’s an inflection point, it’s an opportunity, and we hope Pakistan will take it,” she said in response to another question.
The US has recently suspended about USD 2 billion in security aid to Pakistan. PTI