Pompeo, Qureshi discuss ‘bilateral, regional and international issues’

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Islamabad: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Wednesday discussed “bilateral, regional and international issues” during their crucial talks, in a bid to reset the strained bilateral ties on basis of “mutual trust and respect”.

This is the US’ first high-level dialogue with Pakistan since the new government of Prime Minister Imran Khan assumed office after the July 25 elections and comes days after the Trump administration cancelled USD 300 million in military aid to Islamabad.

Pompeo, accompanied by US Joint Chief of Staff Chairman General Joseph Dunford, reached the Foreign Office to meet with Qureshi.

Qureshi and Pompeo discussed “bilateral, regional and international issues” in the meeting that lasted for about 40 minutes, Foreign Office spokesperson Mohammad Faisal said.

“FM Qureshi underscores the need to reset bilateral ties on basis of mutual trust and respect. Safeguarding Pakistan’s national interests will remain supreme priority,” Faisal tweeted.

Pompeo is also expected to meet Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Prime Minister Khan.

He is expected to press Pakistan to target all terror groups on its soil and play a positive role in war-torn Afghanistan when he meets the country’s new leadership in a bid to reset the strained bilateral ties.

Pompeo landed at the Nur Khan Airbase in Islamabad this afternoon and went straight to the US embassy.

The relation between the two “allies” are passing through a difficult period as the US is upset over what it calls lack of cooperation from Islamabad in eliminating militancy in Afghanistan. PTI