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Kerry welcomes thaw in Kabul-Islamabad ties

Kerry welcomes thaw in Kabul-Islamabad ties

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Dec 01, 2014 - 10:16

WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): US Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday met visiting Pakistaninfo-icon Army Chief Gen. Raheel Sharif on a host of issues, includinfg the current situation in Afghanistaninfo-icon, officials said.

Kerry welcomed progress on improving Pak-Afghan relations as a step to regional stability and assured full support in this regard, Major General Asim Bajwa, the director general (DG) of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), said after the meeting.

As Gen Raheel put a Pakistani perspective on regional security issues, Kerry hailed the contact as a productive meeting. “Back in DC post-Thanksgiving; productive with Pakistan Chief of Army Raheel Sharif at State Dept,” Kerry twitted soon after the meeting.

No other details of the meeting were immediately available. A picture posted by Kerry on his twitter account showed him shaking hands with Gen Sharif, dressed in civilian attire.

In a series of tweets, Bajwa said Kerry acknowledged Pakistan's role in fighting terror and its sacrifices. The secretary of state praised Pakistan Army's professionalism and termed it a truly binding force.

Kerry welcomed progress on improving Pak-Afghan relations as step to regional stability, and assured full support in this regard, Bajwa said. On his maiden visit as the top Pakistani commander, Sharif stayed in the US for nearly two weeks.

During his stay, Sharif met National Security Advisor Susan Rice, his American counterpart and other military commanders, including the US Central Command chief.

The post-2014 US military strategy for the Pak-Afghan region and the Zarb-i-Azb Operation would be reviewed at the next meeting of the US-Pakistan Defence Consultative Group in Washington in the second week of December.
The forum also allows both sides to exchange views and coordinate defence policy with the goal of strengthening defence cooperation to support each country’s security interests, said the Pentagon.

rm/mud

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