Sunday December 05, 2021

‘Events of past few decades made Pak-US relations security centric’

October 18, 2021
‘Events of past few decades made Pak-US relations security centric’

Islamabad: Pakistan’s ambassador to US D. Asad Majeed Khan has said that the events of the past few decades essentially made Pakistan-US relations a security-centric relationship.

Mr. Khan was addressing a web talk on ‘Pakistan and the US: next steps in relationship’ organised here by the Institute of Strategic Studies (ISS). The talk was moderated by Director General, ISSI, Ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry.

Mr. Khan was of the view that the Biden administration inherited a lot of unprecedented issues and problems including the decision to withdraw from Afghanistan. The collapse of the Afghan National Army came as a surprise for the US.

This has also given rise to internal finger-pointing in the US generating a sentiment of reflection and introspection. Mr. Khan opined that Afghanistan will remain the primary and principal subject of conversation between the two capitals.

Over the years, Pakistan reduced its dependence on the economic and military assistance that the US once provided and was on the giving end in the context of providing and facilitating the peace process. He opined that there are two additional stress points on the relationship, ie, US-China escalation and US-India strategic partnership.

Concluding his remarks Mr. Khan said that the bilateral interactions between the two capitals are gaining momentum on multiple tracks including climate change and clean energy.

Dr. Rifaat Hussain, Professor of Public Policy, National University of Sciences and Technology, raised caution on the current Indian mindset and attitude that encourages fighting war on two fronts and questioned the stalemate that is present at the highest level of the leadership. He was of the view that there is tremendous ambiguity that exists in the US Congress as well as in the Pentagon about the kind of relationship the US wants with Pakistan.

Dr Rabia Akhtar from the University of Lahore said that today Pakistan is free of tags in its relationship with the US with the breaking of the Af-Pak prism and the Indo-Pak dehyphenation.

She observed that this opportunity should be used to craft an independent foreign policy with a focus on regional connectivity, completion of CPEC projects as well as building back its economy. Aizaz Chaudhry, DG, ISS, thanked the participants in the end.