WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 (APP):Describing Pakistan’s relations with the United States as very important, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Sunday said that Islamabad desires relations with United States on the basis of mutual respect and mutual interests.
Addressing a press conference here at Pakistan Embassy, the Foreign Minister said that he would meet with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on October 2 to “reset” ties between the two countries. This meeting will take place
as per invitation of Secretary Pompeo who extended the invitation to the Foreign Minister during his visit to Pakistan early this month.
Alluding to the Pakistan-US relations spanned over 70 years, the Minister said that Pakistan has always supported the United States and would like to move forward and manage the relationship in the backdrop of their past friendship.
The Foreign Minister said that the relationship between the two countries had recently been fractured. However, Pakistan intends to continue its engagement with the US and manage the relationship by concentrating on points of convergence.
Replying to a question on China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and its impact on Pak-US relations, foreign minister said that China is very important and trusted friend of Pakistan and has always supported Pakistan in difficult times. “We highly value our relationship with China,” he added.
“China is important for Pakistan and the friendship with the United States was equally important, We will engage with both,” he said.
“On Afghanistan, foreign minister said that peace in Afghanistan was in interest of Pakistan and Islamabad has always played a positive role in this regard. He, however, underlined that there should be an inclusive approach in order to evolve a lasting political solution to the Afghanistan conflict.
He said that Pakistan has a very positive approach and “we have made the most sacrifices” in the fight against terrorism. He said that Pakistan played an important role in degrading Al-Qaeda.
While answering a question regarding future of Pak-India relations, foreign minister reiterated Pakistan’s principled position of being open to dialogue and firmly believes that it’s the only way forward to ensure regional peace and stability.
Responding to another question, Qureshi said that India cancelled the proposed meeting between the foreign ministers to divert attention from its internal problems.
He reiterated Pakistan’s desire for peace, but said that country is ready to face any aggression. He said that our thinking is positive and we desires peace with India, but they were trying to avoid peace.