PKONWEB Report (WASHINGTON/ISLAMABAD) — Weeks after US President wrote a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan, seeking Pakistan’s help for Afghan peace process, Trump said he wants a good relationship with Pakistan and is looking forward to meeting the new leadership of the country, its non-Nato ally, with which he had been overly tough and sulfurous over Afghanistan imbroglio.
About engaging with the Pakistani leadership, Trump said during a cabinet meeting on Wednesday : “So, I look forward to meeting with the folks from — and the new leadership in Pakistan, we’ll be doing that in the not-too-distant future.
Trump’s note to PM Khan in November led to Islamabad facilitating a meeting between the United States and the Taliban in Abu Dhabi last month that was also attended by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Another meeting has been planned in Saudi Arabia, but its dates have not been made public as yet.
Following Trump’s remarks, the Foreign Office on Thursday welcomed it and said Islamabad was keenly waiting for the engagement at the highest level.
“We look forward to positive engagement with the US at the leadership level,” FO spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal said at the weekly media briefing.
Earlier, South Carolina Senator Lindsay Graham, who is considered close to President Trump, told CNN in an interview that if Pakistan helped the US in bringing the Taliban to the table for negotiations, then the US would focus on counterterrorism and the IS.
The Republican Senator also wants the US to offer Pakistan a free trade agreement (FTA) as an incentive for Islamabad to push the Taliban to the peace table to end the Afghan war.
He was giving his reaction to President Trump’s comments about Pakistan during a cabinet meeting.
Senator Graham made this offer in a CNN interview on Wednesday.
The uptick n US-Pakistan relations comes as the Trump administratio wants to end the 17-year brutal war in the neighboring country which has cost American taxpayers more than $1 trillion.