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June 15, 2013

US expresses desire to address Pakistan’s concerns

Editorial

 
June 15, 2013

WASHINGTON: The United States and Pakistan have a strong ongoing dialogue in all areas of their bilateral relationship including counterterrorism and will work together to address any concerns, the State Department said.
Spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters Secretary of State John Kerry is looking forward to visiting Pakistan and India at an appropriate time, but she had no precise travel schedule to announce at the daily briefing.
Questioned about Islamabad’s objections to US drone strikes on its territory and the future of relations between the two countries, the spokesperson indicated the two countries would work together to address any concerns.
“But we do have a strong, ongoing dialogue with Pakistan regarding all aspects of our bilateral relationship and shared interests, including security and counterterrorism cooperation, and we’ll work together to address any of these concerns.” Responding to a question, she confirmed that four US embassy officials, who flew from Islamabad to Karachi, were detained by the airport officials and have since returned to Islamabad.
“In terms of the reasoning, we’re still gathering information on what happened here — I don’t want to over read, and I would encourage none of you to over read, into it while we’re still looking into what the specifics of the events were.”
Asked about the reaction of foreign countries to revelation of US secret surveillance program, the spokesperson acknowledged the disclosure has raised concerns with some governments.“We are, of course, aware recent disclosures in the press about classified US intelligence activities have raised concern with some other governments. I would refer to all of them to speak for themselves. And we have ongoing dialogues with allies and partners around the world on a range of issues, including counterterrorism, cyber-security, and privacy concerns, and all of these programs. And so we’ll continue to discuss those issues and others

raised through our diplomatic channels.”