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Everything with Pakistan not at a standstill: US

Publication Date : 08-05-2012


Everything between the United States and Pakistan was not at "a standstill", the US State Department said yesterday as the two countries continued intense in-camera consultations to save their relationship from a total collapse.

"Well, first of all, I don't think it’s fair to say right now that everything’s at a standstill with Pakistan," the department’s deputy spokesman Mark Toner told a briefing in Washington.

"We've had a series of high-level meetings over the past month to two months that we believe is laying the groundwork for renewed cooperation."

A senior diplomatic source, when asked if the US-Pakistan relationship was heading towards a total collapse, also endorsed the State Department’s position on this issue.

"No collapse but we will have a better picture on Tuesday," the source told Dawn, explaining that officials at the White House were holding internal meetings on efforts to revive bilateral ties. They were expected to finalise their
recommendations by Tuesday and "we will know more about the future of this relationship after the meetings are over", the source added.

The source said that talks in Islamabad between US and Pakistani officials on key issues had entered their second week now.

The two sides decided to stay engaged with each other after US special envoy Marc Grossman visited the Pakistani capital two weeks ago but failed to resolve the differences that prevented the two countries from rebuilding their relationship.

The Pakistanis are demanding an apology over a May 26 US air raid that killed 24 of their soldiers before taking any step for reviving the ties. Pakistan has also demanded an immediate end to US drone strikes in Fata.

The Americans want Pakistan to reopen Nato supply routes to Afghanistan first and have told Islamabad that the drone strikes will continue.


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