The United States of America is concerned about the future of the government in Pakistan and wants to ensure long-term stability in the country, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Wednesday.
Tillerson’s comments came after he met with his Pakistani counterpart Khawaja Muhammad Asif, who is visiting the U.S. to rebuild bilateral relations between Islamabad and Washington after President Trump said that Pakistan is sheltering terrorist groups who are targeting U.S. forces in Afghanistan.
But the U.S. Secretary of State said that Trump’s South Asia strategy was not just about Afghanistan.
“This is about the importance of Pakistan, and Pakistan’s long-term stability as well. We have concerns about the future of Pakistan’s government too …we want their government to be stable. We want it to be peaceful,” he told reporters after meeting with Pakistan’s foreign minister.
“Many of the issues they’re struggling with inside Pakistan are American issues,” he added without elaborating.
At the same time, the U.S. Department of State says that Tillerson and Asif talked about the importance of partnering together to establish peace and prosperity in the region.
“The foreign minister and the Secretary talked about the President’s South Asia strategy and what – that was announced back in August. They also exchanged ideas about how our countries can work together to help stabilize Afghanistan,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters Wednesday.
These comments come as recently General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that he believe Pakistan’s main spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) directorate, had ties to militant groups.