Pakistan, US engaged for Afghan peace despite not having excellent ties: Asif

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ISLAMABAD, Nov 01 (APP)::Minister for Foreign Affairs Khawaja Asif Tuesday said though Pakistan and the United States did not have excellent relations yet they were engaged for a common ground of peace and stability in Afghanistan through joint efforts.
Winding up the debate on the visit of US Secretary of State to Pakistan last week in the Senate, the minister said the US Secretary of State on Tuesday responded to a question of a member in the Senate about his visit to Pakistan.
Pakistan, he said, wanted the US to provide actionable intelligence to it for prompt action and the same message was conveyed to the Secretary of State during the meeting here in Islamabad. He was told that instead of rhetoric the US should react only if no action was taken on the intelligence provided by it, the minister said.
Khawaja Asif said Pakistan’s national interest was supreme, which would be protected at every cost. Before re-engagement with the United States, meetings were held in Beijing, Tehran, Ankara and Riyadh, and with that of the Foreign Minister of Russia to discuss regional solution of such challenging situation, he added.
He said a regional solution of the Afghan issue was must for durable peace. The main thrust of Pakistan’s policy was to promote fraternity with Afghanistan. Pakistan would use the platform of SCO, whose membership it had attained in the current year, to highlight its stance, he added.
Khawaja Asif said the government needed the parliament’s support to categorically present its stance at international forums. The US policy about South East Asia was actually about Afghanistan, which was drafted by generals, who themselves did not succeed in that country during last 15 years. US institutions should have been involved in the policy making instead of the generals, he added.
He said the US administration should be free from the influence of such policy makers as blaming Pakistan for Afghan problems was in fact a bid to conceal their own defeat.
He said foreign policy was being discussed in the parliament and at the meetings of National Security Committee. ”Our foreign policy is at evolutionary stage and it is being framed through a mutual consultation process.” The interest of external elements would not be followed, he added.
He said the China Pakistan Economic Corridor would help improve the national economy and bring prosperity.