US Secretary of State, Military Chief to visit Pakistan in September

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US Secretary of State, Military Chief to visit Pakistan in September

WASHINGTON: US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has confirmed that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Joseph Dunford will visit Pakistan in the first week of September.
Speaking at a news briefing at the Pentagon on Wednesday, Mattis said Pompeo and General Dunford will meet with PM Imran and other Pakistani leaders and discuss relations between the two countries. The two dignitaries are expected in Islamabad for a one-day visit on September 5.
During his visit to Pakistan, Secretary Pompeo will focus on major issue of terrorism, seeking Pakistan ‘s support to take bilateral action against the common enemies and terrorists, Jim Mattis said.
Pompeo will be the first foreign dignitary to meet the newly elected Prime Minister, who took oath of his office on August 18.
Pak-US relations have taken a backtrack after the Pakistan Foreign Office rejected a statement by the US State Department regarding the contents of a phone call between Pompeo and PM Imran Khan last week.
“Pakistan takes exception to the factually incorrect statement issued by US State Dept on today’s phone call between PM Khan & Sec Pompeo. There was no mention at all in the conversation about terrorists operating in Pakistan,” FO spokesperson Dr Faisal tweeted.
He also asked the US to “immediately correct” the statement.
The US State Department, however, indicated there would be no correction in response to Pakistan’s complaint.
PM Imran is well known for his criticism of US military policy in Afghanistan, but he said after winning elections that he seeks better relations with the United States after a series of aid cuts and the suspension of US military training.

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