Jim Mattis to Pakistan: Time to End War in Afghanistan

Jim Mattis to Pakistan: Time to End War in Afghanistan

Jim Mattis to Pakistan: Time to End War in Afghanistan

US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad met on December 4 with Pakistani officials in Islamabad, and a Taliban official said four members from the group's political office in Qatar were also in Pakistan's capital, according to the Associated Press news agency.

Mattis was responding to a question from reporters about the letter written by US President Donald Trump to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, seeking his support in the peace process in Afghanistan.

Despite Pakistan's positive rhetoric in support of the South Asia Strategy, violent extremist organisations or VEOs operate along its border with Afghanistan, he said.

The ministry also said Mr Trump emphasised Pakistan and Washington "should explore opportunities to work together and renew their partnership".

He said USA leadership looks forward to working with Pakistan in furthering the shared goal of peace through a political settlement in Afghanistan.

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"When you use words like attractive to them, that means that they want something from us in return for any kind of a positive role in bringing about a reconciliation, which by the way reconciliation in Afghanistan means that the Taliban will have a role to play, a major role to play in the further governance of Afghanistan", Hirono asked.

At an worldwide conference on Afghanistan in Geneva last Monday, Afghan president Ashraf Ghani said a 12-person Afghan negotiating team has been prepared for peace talks. Last month, the Pentagon said that the U.S. has suspended $1.66 billion in security assistance to Pakistan after President Trump's directive.

The White House believes that Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency and other military bodies have long helped fund and arm the Taliban both for ideological reasons and to counter rising Indian influence in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan's security forces are taking unsustainable casualties and would collapse if all U.S. troops withdrew, the nominee to lead U.S. Central Command said on Tuesday.

He will meet hold meetings with Pakistani officials.

US special envoy for Afghanistan peace, Zalmay Khalilzad, is due to arrive in Islamabad this week to further his mission of encouraging the insurgents to engage in an intra-Afghan peace dialogue to find a negotiating end to the conflict that has also caused record civilian casualties this year.

According to the US State Department, Mr Khalilzad will travel to Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Belgium, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar with a delegation from December 2 to December 20.

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