Pakistan pledges to support negotiations with the Taliban


WASHINGTON -- Pakistan pledged to support negotiations with the Taliban to end the Afghan war as it asked Washington to restore military aid to Islamabad, AFP reported Wednesday (October 3).

The announcement came as Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi met with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Tuesday (October 2) to explain the Afghan strategy of new Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has advocated talks with, rather than military action against, the Taliban.

Last month, Washington cut off $300 million (Rs. 37 billion) in military aid to Pakistan, citing indecision by Islamabad in confronting militant groups.

Qureshi said he found Pompeo "ready to listen" to Pakistan and said he was returning to Islamabad "slightly more hopeful" than before.

In a Wednesday statement, US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said, "Secretary Pompeo emphasised the important role Pakistan could play in bringing about a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan."

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