WASHINGTON/ISLAMABAD – President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Thursday discussed bilateral and regional issues in a telephone call during which the US leader backed efforts by India and Pakistan to improve their ties, the White House said.
In a statement, the White House said the two leaders agreed to continue to work together to strengthen US-Pakistan relations and advance “our shared interest of a stable, secure, and prosperous Pakistan and region.”
“The president discussed his recent visit to India, and noted the United States supports all efforts by both nations to improve ties,” it said.
“President Obama welcomed the improved relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan, and noted appreciation for Pakistan’s efforts to combat terrorism.
“Both leaders expressed the intent to meet at a mutually convenient time.”
A statement issued by PM House in Islamabad said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has conveyed Pakistan’s concerns over America’s support to India for securing permanent membership of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to US President Barack Obama, saying New Delhi has been blatantly violating UN resolutions on Kashmir so it doesn’t deserve the coveted position.
The premier discussed with US president host of issues particularly the role Pakistan was playing for weeding out menace of terrorism from the region and cooperation and coordination with neighbouring Afghanistan in this connection.
Conveying the growing concern of Pakistan for support of United States to India in securing the permanent membership of UNSC, Premier Sharif said that India did not deserve that position as it was continuously violating the UN resolutions on Kashmir and involved in unprecedented human rights violations rather pogrom of armless innocent Kashmiris.
Prime Minister’s House spokesman informed that US president rang up Premier Sharif Thursday evening and the conversation between them lasted for half an hour wherein both the leaders discussed issues of mutual interest and those related to regional stability and peace.
The spokesman said that the prime minister also expressed country’s desire to become a member of civil Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and sought support and patronage of the US in this connection.
According to the spokesman, the US president lauded efforts being made by Pakistan for fighting terrorism and extremism in the country. He especially appreciated the ongoing military operation Zerb-i-Azb against militants in tribal areas and hoped that the impact of the operation would go a long way in bringing peace and tranquillity in the region.
The US president also appreciated the growing coordination and cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan in rooting out menace of terrorism and hoped that things would improve in due course of time.
Reuters adds: The United States, whose forces formally ended their Afghan combat mission at the end of last year in spite of a continuing Taliban insurgency, supports any role China can play in bringing long-term stability to Afghanistan, a senior US State Department official said.
“The US and China have agreed to work together to support Afghanistan’s government of national unity, security forces and economic development to ensure that Afghanistan can never again be used as a safe haven for terrorists, the official, who declined to be identified, said.