US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (C) prepares to board his plane at Sunan International Airport in Pyongyang on July 7, 2018.(AFP File Photo)
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (C) prepares to board his plane at Sunan International Airport in Pyongyang on July 7, 2018.(AFP File Photo)

On trip to Pakistan, Pompeo seeks ‘reset’ in strained ties

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he wants to “reset” strained relations with Pakistan when he travels to the South Asian nation Wednesday and meets with its new prime minister
By Associated Press | Washington
UPDATED ON SEP 05, 2018 10:10 AM IST

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he wants to “reset” strained relations with Pakistan when he travels to the South Asian nation Wednesday and meets with its new prime minister.

Pompeo will meet with Prime Minister Imran Khan, a longtime critic of the U.S., and powerful army chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa. Pompeo will be accompanied by Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The Trump administration has cut military aid over dissatisfaction with Pakistan’s commitment to assisting the U.S. strategy for pressuring the Afghan Taliban, whose leaders use Pakistan as a sanctuary. The Pentagon said it has taken final steps to cancel $300 million in assistance, in addition to $500 million already canceled.

Khan took office last month at the head of a coalition government after his party won the most seats in July elections. When Pompeo made a congratulatory phone call to Khan soon after, Islamabad objected to Washington’s readout of the call, denying that Pompeo had raised the importance of “taking decisive action against all terrorists” operating in the country.

Speaking to reporters on his plane Tuesday, Pompeo was conciliatory. He said he wanted to visit at the beginning of the former cricket star’s tenure “in an effort to reset the relationship between the two countries.”

“We have worked closely with the Pakistanis in my role as CIA Director, our teams have been working together for a long time,” said Pompeo, who formerly served as chief of the U.S. spy agency.

“There are a lot of challenges between our two nations for sure, but we’re hopeful that with the new leadership ... we can find common ground and we can begin to work on some of our shared problems together,” he said.

“I hope we can turn the page and begin to make progress, but there are real expectations. We need Pakistan to seriously engage to help us get to the reconciliation we need in Afghanistan,” Pompeo said.

As part of President Donald Trump’s effort to resolve the 17-year conflict in Afghanistan, the U.S. has escalated pressure on Pakistan, which it also views as key to compelling the Taliban to agree to negotiate with the government in Kabul. The insurgents have so far demurred, saying they want direct talks with the U.S. instead.

Pompeo said veteran diplomat Zalmay Khalilzad is being appointed as special adviser for Afghanistan. The secretary of state said Khalilzad would be focused on “developing the opportunities to get the Afghans and the Taliban to come to a reconciliation.”

An Afghan native, Khalilzad was tapped by President George W. Bush to be his ambassador to Afghanistan after the overthrow of the Taliban following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He then served as ambassador to Iraq and the United Nations. He has been strongly critical of Pakistan.

Khalilzad is joining Pompeo on the current trip. After Pakistan, they travel to neighboring India, an archrival of Pakistan that has increasingly close ties with Washington.

On Thursday, Pompeo and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis will hold talks with their Indian counterparts. Pompeo described India as “a true strategic partner” and key to the success of U.S. strategy in the Indo-Pacific region.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Biden, who indicated during the campaign that he favored extending New START, is not proposing any alterations, the U.S. official said.(Bloomberg)
Biden, who indicated during the campaign that he favored extending New START, is not proposing any alterations, the U.S. official said.(Bloomberg)

US Prez Joe Biden proposing 5-year extension of nuke treaty: Report

AP, Washington
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 11:55 PM IST
Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan planned to convey the extension proposal to Russia’s ambassador to the U.S., Anatoly Antonov, on Thursday afternoon, said one official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss a matter not yet publicly announced by the administration.
Close
The ECDC also urged members to monitor changes in transmission rates or infection severity to identify and assess the circulation and impact of variants, and also to prepare laboratories for increased testing.(AFP)
The ECDC also urged members to monitor changes in transmission rates or infection severity to identify and assess the circulation and impact of variants, and also to prepare laboratories for increased testing.(AFP)

EU agency urges preparation of stronger measures over coronavirus variants

AFP
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 11:36 PM IST
The European Centre Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said in a new report that countries in the EU and European Economic Area "should expect increased numbers of Covid-19 cases due to the gradual spread and possible dominance of the variants with increased transmissibility."
Close
The fire broke out in the afternoon on the second floor of the two-storey building.(REUTERS)
The fire broke out in the afternoon on the second floor of the two-storey building.(REUTERS)

At least 15 killed, 11 injured in nursing home fire in Ukraine

Reuters, Kyiv
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 11:01 PM IST
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskiy urged the interior minister to open and take charge of an inquiry into the incident.
Close
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends her weekly news conference at the Capitol in Washington, DC on January 15, 2021. (REUTERS)
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi attends her weekly news conference at the Capitol in Washington, DC on January 15, 2021. (REUTERS)

Senate to get Donald Trump's impeachment trial soon: Nancy Pelosi

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 10:59 PM IST
The House impeachment managers -- the prosecutors who will present the case against Trump -- are in contact with the Senate about the timing, Pelosi said at a news conference Thursday.
Close
The poll for the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung was carried out online in December, after Biden’s election victory had become clear, according to Ray. YouGov surveyed roughly 1,000 respondents from each of the 12 countries, with results weighted for variables such as respondents’ ages, gender, education and religion.(AP)
The poll for the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung was carried out online in December, after Biden’s election victory had become clear, according to Ray. YouGov surveyed roughly 1,000 respondents from each of the 12 countries, with results weighted for variables such as respondents’ ages, gender, education and religion.(AP)

World has faith in Joe Biden, but not in the US: Survey

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 10:39 PM IST
Even in countries Trump courted heavily while in office –- such as India and Brazil -– Biden was seen as a welcome change. Only in Russia did more respondents disapprove of the change of guard in Washington.
Close
Canada’s campaign hit another roadblock last week, when Pfizer Inc. said it would temporarily reduce deliveries outside the US as it renovates a factory in Belgium to boost capacity. (Representative Image)(Bloomberg)
Canada’s campaign hit another roadblock last week, when Pfizer Inc. said it would temporarily reduce deliveries outside the US as it renovates a factory in Belgium to boost capacity. (Representative Image)(Bloomberg)

Canada's vaccination drive hindered despite securing enough shots for population

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 09:40 PM IST
Canada has administered about 684,000 doses, enough to give first shots to about 1.8% of the population, according to Bloomberg’s vaccine tracker, though some people have already gotten two.
Close
A cyclist rides across an empty Oxford Street in London as Britain heads into a national lockdown on January 5. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on January 4 ordered England into a new national lockdown to contain a surge in Covid-19 cases that was threatening the British healthcare system before a vaccine programme reached a critical mass. (Justin Tallis / AFP)
A cyclist rides across an empty Oxford Street in London as Britain heads into a national lockdown on January 5. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on January 4 ordered England into a new national lockdown to contain a surge in Covid-19 cases that was threatening the British healthcare system before a vaccine programme reached a critical mass. (Justin Tallis / AFP)

One in five British adults went further into debt due to pandemic

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 09:08 PM IST
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey have highlighted those concerns in recent weeks and begun talking about measures that could bridge the inequality gap.
Close
The Boeing 737-500 jet crashed on January 9, minutes after taking off from Jakarta, the capital.(AP)
The Boeing 737-500 jet crashed on January 9, minutes after taking off from Jakarta, the capital.(AP)

Indonesia ends search for crashed plane's victims, debris

PTI, Jakarta
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:32 PM IST
Transportation minister Budi Karya Sumadi said retrieval operations have ended after nearly two weeks, but that a limited search for the missing memory unit from the cockpit voice recorder will continue.
Close
Kerry praised Europe’s policies on tackling climate and blasted Trump’s stance as “reckless” and embarrassing.(AP)
Kerry praised Europe’s policies on tackling climate and blasted Trump’s stance as “reckless” and embarrassing.(AP)

US climate envoy Kerry says Glasgow last chance for action

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:20 PM IST
In his first speech since becoming US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry said failure is “simply not an option” at COP26, which is taking place in Glasgow, Scotland, in November.
Close
Merkel dismissed suggestions that the election would be influenced by her handling of the pandemic.(AP)
Merkel dismissed suggestions that the election would be influenced by her handling of the pandemic.(AP)

Angela Merkel promises widespread vaccine availability before September vote

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:01 PM IST
Amid efforts to boost vaccine supply, Merkel said all Germans who want a shot will get one by the end of the summer on September 21. National elections take place on September 26.
Close
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador described Biden's bill that could open a path to citizenship for immigrants in the US as "very good".(AP)
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador described Biden's bill that could open a path to citizenship for immigrants in the US as "very good".(AP)

Mexican president hails Biden agenda, celebrates migration plan

Reuters, Mexico City
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 08:00 PM IST
Biden issued half a dozen executive orders after his inauguration on Wednesday to reverse hardline immigration policies.
Close
Continuing claims in state programs -- an approximation of the number of people receiving ongoing jobless benefits -- decreased by 127,000 to 5.05 million in the week ended January 9. The median forecasts in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for 935,000 initial applications and 5.3 million continuing claims. (Representative Image)
Continuing claims in state programs -- an approximation of the number of people receiving ongoing jobless benefits -- decreased by 127,000 to 5.05 million in the week ended January 9. The median forecasts in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for 935,000 initial applications and 5.3 million continuing claims. (Representative Image)

US jobless claims fall slightly but remain elevated

Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:36 PM IST
Initial jobless claims in regular state programs declined by 26,000 to 900,000 in the week ended January 16, according to Labor Department data Thursday. On an un-adjusted basis, the figure dropped by more than 151,000 to 960,668.
Close
The improved tone follows a video conference between Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, on January 9 in which both stressed the importance of the bilateral relationship.(AP)
The improved tone follows a video conference between Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, on January 9 in which both stressed the importance of the bilateral relationship.(AP)

EU, Turkey call for improved relations after turbulent 2020

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:17 PM IST
Turkey, which remains an official candidate for EU membership despite the tensions, is facing the threat of EU economic sanctions over a hydrocarbons dispute with Greece in the eastern Mediterranean, but the mood music between Brussels and Ankara has improved since the new year.
Close
Former US Presidents Barack Obama, George W Bush and Bill Clinton
Former US Presidents Barack Obama, George W Bush and Bill Clinton

Clinton, Bush and Obama record joint video to wish Biden success

Written by Prashasti Singh, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:12 PM IST
In the video, the three former Presidents of the United States highlighted the importance of listening to people with different opinions.
Close
Joao Vale de Almeida is the 27-nation EU’s envoy to the UK, which left the bloc last year.(AP)
Joao Vale de Almeida is the 27-nation EU’s envoy to the UK, which left the bloc last year.(AP)

UK, EU in spat over diplomatic status of bloc's ambassador

AP, London
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 07:05 PM IST
The EU says the rest of its 143 delegations around the world have all been given full diplomatic status.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP