Pakistan looks to build on ‘momentum’ in bilateral ties with US

Published January 2, 2024
This file photo shows interim Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani and US Ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome. — Photo courtesy Radio Pakistan
This file photo shows interim Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani and US Ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome. — Photo courtesy Radio Pakistan

In a meeting with US ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome, interim Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani on Tuesday said that the two sides should “continue to build on the recent exchanges and the momentum gained in bilateral ties”.

According to a press release issued by the Foreign Office (FO), Blome called on Jilani today. It said the discussions between the two focused on “some major aspects of bilateral relations”, including Chief of Army Staff General Asim Munir’s recent trip to the US.

FM Jilani “underlined that in 2024, the two sides should continue to build on the recent exchanges and the momentum gained in bilateral ties”.

A separate statement issued by US Mission Acting Spokesperson Thomas Montgomery said Blome and FM Jilani touched ground on a “wide range of important bilateral issues”.

These included expanded diplomatic engagement, the safe and efficient processing of Afghan citizens eligible for resettlement to the United States and other issues of mutual interest, he said.

Last month, the army chief had undertaken his first official visit to Washington since assuming the role. Gen Munir had met key government and military officials, including US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Defence (retired) General Llyod J. Austin, Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, Deputy National Security Adviser Jonathan Finer and Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff General Charles Q. Brown.

Matters of bilateral interests, global and regional security issues, and ongoing conflicts were discussed during the meetings. “Both sides agreed to continue engagement for exploring potential avenues of bilateral collaboration in pursuit of shared interests,” the military’s media wing had said at the time.

Gen Munir had also met Gen Michael Erik Kurilla, the commander of the US Central Command (Centcom), and discussed cooperation in regional security matters.

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