State Department Spokesman Mark Toner. - File Photo

WASHINGTON: The United States believes the Pakistani government is capable of working with it on shared challenges, with the State Department expressing support for a strong democracy in the key South Asian country.

“Much of our work in Pakistan is geared towards building the kind of institutions that will strengthen Pakistani democracy,” State Department Spokesman Mark Toner said in answer to a question at the daily briefing.

“Clearly, we want to see a strong democracy emerge in Pakistan that works side by side with the military and that is to the benefit of Pakistani people moving forward,” he added.

Asked if the US had confidence in the current Pakistani government's ability and intent to work with the United Stated on shared challenges, the spokesman replied: “We do believe they're capable of it, and certainly for our part, we're willing to work with them to address those shared challenges.”

Questioned about the outcome of US Special Representative Marc Grossman's recent visit to Islamabad, the spokesman said he has not received readout from Grossman's trip but reaffirmed Washington's desire to work constructively with Pakistan on dealing with shared challenges.

I would just say that, as he (Grossman) has said multiple times, that we're working together with Pakistan. We want to find ways that we can act jointly on our shared challenges. We continue to pursue those interests.

We're obviously as we've said many times; Pakistan is under enormous threat from extremist groups. We want to find ways to work constructively with them to address these challenges.

The spokesman's comments came as the two countries struggled to overcome challenges in bilateral ties, arising from a spate of events related to fight against terrorism including retired US Admiral Mike Mullen's controversial characterization of Pakistan's contacts with the Afghan militant Haqqani group.

Islamabad has strongly rejected Mullen's assertions.

Experts say despite differences, a cooperative US-Pakistan relationship remains critical to a successful outcome of the decade-old Afghan conflict.

Opinion

Elite politics

Elite politics

For most part, Pakistan’s fractious politics has seen fierce govt-opposition conflict and mutual efforts to upend each other.

Editorial

Extension legacy
Updated 05 Dec, 2022

Extension legacy

The practice of having individuals carry on well beyond their time is up.
Dodging accountability
05 Dec, 2022

Dodging accountability

A WARNING carried in these pages in August appears to have gone completely unheeded. Months ago, as the government...
Double standards
05 Dec, 2022

Double standards

IN a globalised world, if states fail to protect the human rights of their citizens, or worse, participate in ...
Retracted offer
04 Dec, 2022

Retracted offer

WITH so many U-turns under his belt, it was hardly surprising when on Saturday, PTI chairman Imran Khan decided to...
Embassy attack
Updated 04 Dec, 2022

Embassy attack

The Taliban should have enhanced the existing security arrangements.
Smog season
04 Dec, 2022

Smog season

FOR the past week, major cities of Pakistan have been among the top most polluted cities in the world. Lahore ranked...