US secretary of state John Kerry met the visiting Pakistani army chief General Raheel Sharif where the two discussed “security-related” issues, officials said.
“Secretary Kerry met this morning with Chief of Army Staff Raheel Sharif to follow up on some of the security-related conversations that he had with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in October,” a State Department spokesperson told PTI.
“General Sharif’s consultations in Washington are part of our regular, ongoing bilateral discussions with a broad range of Pakistani officials, and we appreciate the productive discussions we had regarding our bilateral defence and security relationship,” the spokesperson said.
At the meeting, Kerry reaffirmed his commitment to US-Pakistan partnership and its importance in addressing issues of mutual concern and ensuring peace, stability, and prosperity across the region.
Richard Olson, the new Special US Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, who began his tenure a day earlier, also attended the meeting.
The State Department, however, did not say the specific issues that were discussed with Gen Sharif.
However, in a series of tweets, ISPR spokesperson Lt Gen Asim Bajwa said Sharif “highlighted need for resolution of Kashmir”.
Regional security -- including Afghanistan and India -- was discussed during the meeting, Bajwa said.
According to Bajwa, Kerry acknowledged Pakistan’s contributions and enormous sacrifices in fight against terror while Gen Sharif highlighted Pakistan’s perspective on regional security and supported Afghanistan-owned reconciliation process, the challenges and the way forward.
He reiterated Pakistan’s desire to solidify US-Pakistan relations based on mutual interest and respect, Bajwa said.
Meanwhile, the White House said Gen Sharif is scheduled to meet US vice-president Joe Biden on Thursday. The meeting will be held at the Roosevelt Room of the White House.