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Alice Wells arrives in Islamabad on four-day visit

Alice Wells arrives in Islamabad on four-day visit
January 19, 2020
ISLAMABAD (92 News) – US Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Alice Wells reached Islamabad on a four-day visit on Sunday. During her stay, she will meet political and military leadership to discuss security situation. The US deputy assistant secretary will also exchange her views on Afghan peace process. The Pakistan leadership will raise the issue of Occupied Kashmir issue. The Middle East situation and US-Iran will also be discussed during the meetings. Wells' visit to Pakistan comes soon after the visit of Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to United States where he met with United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and UN President Tijjani Muhammad-Bande. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had called on US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. In addition to the Kashmir issue, they exchanged their views on reducing tension in Middle East and the Afghan reconciliation process. During his meetings with other officials, the foreign minister also forcefully raised the Kashmir issue. Meanwhile, FM Shah Mahmood Qureshi called on US Adviser on National Security Robert C O’Brian in White House. They discussed the Pak-US bilateral relations in addition to matters of mutual interest. The minister also apprised Robert C O’Brian about his recent visits to the Gulf states. Pakistan Ambassador to the US Dr Asad Majeed Khan also accompanied him. Earlier, US Under Secretary of Defense John Rood called on the Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. During the meeting, the foreign minister and the Under Secretary discussed various aspects of Pakistan-US defense cooperation as well as the evolving regional situation. The under secretary briefed the foreign minister about the ongoing defense related cooperation between the two countries. The foreign minister apprised the under secretary about Pakistan's various efforts for peace and stability in the South Asian region. The foreign minister highlighted that defense and security cooperation has been one of the defining features of their bilateral cooperation. He said that the US decision to revive International Military Education and Training (IMET) programme for Pakistan had significant symbolic value and was a welcome first step in further reviving bilateral military cooperation. The foreign minister informed the under secretary about his recent visits to the regional countries to diffuse tensions and underscored the need for de-escalation and dialogue. He stated that Pakistan remained deeply concerned about the prospects of any instability in its neighbourhood and remained ready to play its due role in finding peaceful solution to the tensions between US and Iran.