US readmits Pakistan to military training.


ISLAMABAD -- The United States has started getting warmer to Pakistan amid hints of the Afghan issue resolution.

Trump administration approved a resumption of Pakistan's participation in a coveted US military training and educational programme more than a year after it was suspended, the State Department said.

The decision to resume Islamabad's participation in the International Military Education and Training Programme, or IMET - for more than a decade a pillar of US-Pakistani military ties - underscores warming relations that have followed meetings this year between US President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Washington also has credited Islamabad with helping to facilitate negotiations on a US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.

This month, Pakistan and the United States showed satisfaction with the recent talks between the US and the Afghan Taliban in Doha, Qatar.

US top negotiator for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad met Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa separately during his one-day visit to the federal capital.

'During the meeting, both the leaders discussed Afghan peace process and regional security. They also deliberated on overall law and order situation,' said a foreign ministry statement.

Foreign Minister Qureshi assured Khalilzad that Pakistan will continue to sincerely play the role of facilitator in the Afghan peace process.

Pakistan ambassador-designate to Germany Dr Mohammed Faisal had said Pakistan welcomed the resumption of direct talks between the US and Taliban.

'We have always held that there is no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan. We hope that the Peace Process is concluded soon and it leads to an intra-Afghan dialogue and reduction of violence,' he said.

Dr Faisal said Pakistan will continue to support all peaceful efforts in this regard, as it had done in the past. 'However, at this critical time, it is important to remain watchful of the role of spoilers who do not wish to see an end to the Afghan conflict,' he added.

The State Department administers IMET. It was a small facet of US security aid programmes for Pakistan worth some $2 billion that remain...

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