US VP reiterates 'do more' in meeting with PM Abbasi

Elias Hubbard
March 18, 2018

President Donald Trump arrives to speak at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, in San Diego.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence told Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi that his country should work closer with the United States and do more to defeat the Taliban and other militants, the White House says.

USA vice-president Mike Pence told Pakistan's prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi that his country "must do more" against the Taliban and other militants, the White House said on Saturday.

The US-Pak relations witnessed a downtrend after US President Donald Trump's New Year tweet, wherein he had claimed that Washington had "foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years".

The statement did not indicate the exact time, site, or nature of the talks, but US and Pakistani news media quoting official sources as saying a meeting took place at the vice president's official residence in Washington.

The two sides discussed ways to improve relations between the two countries particularly in areas of war against terrorism, the Afghanistan peace process and economic ties. Abbasi, who was on a personal trip to see his ailing sister in the US, met Pence at the US Naval Observatory, the vice president's official residence.

The News, a Pakistani daily, quoted an unidentified official as saying that Pakistan still has not taken the action to the Trump administration's satisfaction.

In his new South Asia Policy unveiled in August, Trump had called for tougher measure against Pakistan if it did not cooperates the U.S. in its fight against terrorism.

"We are continuing to look for real action, not just words, from Pakistan on the Taliban and Haqqani sanctuaries", the official said.

The Trump Administration, for the first time, has really restored clarity on the U.S. -Pakistan relationship.

Like their boss, the U.S. lawmakers also focused on the current situation in Afghanistan and expressed "their concern about China's growing influence in Pakistan", said highly-placed sources. He told PM Abbasi to act indiscriminately against Afghan Taliban, Haqqani Network and other outfits.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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