Joint action against Haqqanis: Pakistan spurns USA demand

Joint action against Haqqanis: Pakistan spurns USA demand

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has said he intends to work hard to find common ground with Pakistan in the fight against terrorism, which is necessary to restore the level of stability in South Asia to allow economic development.

Mattis is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and General Bajwa.

In his discussion with Mattis, Abbasi said the two allies shared objectives.

Citing the USA war in Afghanistan has taken a big toll on Pakistan, Asif said stability in the region is key to prosperity.

Mattis also assured Pakistan that the U.S. will take appropriate action against militant groups in Afghanistan that were spreading unrest in Pakistan.

Pakistan has repeatedly expressed its serious concerns regarding India's role in Afghanistan to the U.S. and Afghan leadership, according to reports.

They chose to continue efforts for Afghan peace.

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Pakistan had brokered a landmark round of direct talks between the fragile Afghan government, and the Taliban in Islamabad in July 2015, but the process broke down after the Taliban announced the death of their long-term leader, Mullah Omer, triggering a bitter power struggle within the militant group.

Mattis told Pakistani officials that the USA was ready to play its role in addressing Pakistan's reservations.

When asked if he would "prod" Islamabad to take more action, he replied: "That's not the way I deal with issues".

Mattis recognised Pakistan's sacrifices in the war against terrorism.

But Mattis's comments were in contrast to more strident language from the Central Intelligence Agency chief at a security forum last weekend. "We have eliminated safe havens from Pakistan's soil but are prepared to look into the possibility of miscreants exploiting Pakistan's hospitality to the Afghan Refugees to the detriment of our Afghan brothers", it said.

"In the absence of the Pakistanis achieving that, we're going to do everything we can to make sure that safe haven no longer exists", said Pompeo.

The remarks triggered a series of high-level diplomatic meetings in the United States and Pakistan, but Islamabad has given few signs of concessions. Ahead of his visit to Islamabad, Mattis said he wants to work with Pakistan, listening to one another without being combative with one another, listening to others perspective, to address the problems.

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