US 'looks forward' to closer cooperation with new Pakistani government – The Express Tribune

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Price terms Islamabad 'important stakeholder' for stability in Afghanistan
The United States looked forward to continuing working with the new government in Pakistan across regional and international issues, said the US Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price during a regular press briefing.
Price termed a 75-year-long relationship with Pakistan “a vital one” in response to a question regarding the ties between the US and the Pakistani government led by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.
He said, “We have already congratulated the new Pakistani prime minister, Shehbaz Sharif, on his election, and we look – we work – excuse me – we look forward to working closely with his government.”
“This is work that has the potential to promote peace and prosperity in Pakistan and throughout the region,” he added.
Read Pakistan frustrated by Afghan Taliban's inaction against TTP
Last week, the White House had also felicitated Shehbaz on becoming the premier of Pakistan and expressed hope to boost bilateral ties. In response to the statements by the US, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif welcomed the US's “reaffirmation of long-standing ties with Pakistan”.
'Key stakeholder'
The question Price was answering also referred to reported airstrikes by the Pakistani forces inside Afghanistan’s territory resulting in several deaths.
The US official refused to comment on that, telling the reporter to ask the Pakistani authorities in this regard. However, he termed Pakistan’s engagement important to achieve stability in Afghanistan.
Price said the US saw Pakistan as “an important stakeholder, an important partner, with whom we are engaging and have engaged as we work together to bring about an Afghanistan that is more stable, is more secure, is more prosperous".
He added that Washington favoured an Afghanistan "that respects the basic and fundamental rights of its people, all of its people, including its minorities, its women, its girls”.
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