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The U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William J. Burns, who arrived in Islamabad this evening, called on the Special Assistant to Prime Minister for Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 8 May 2014.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed Pakistan-U.S. bilateral relations and regional issues, including Afghanistan. Foreign Secretary Mr. Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry and U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Mr. Richard Olson were also present in the meeting, held over dinner.

The Special Assistant underscored the importance Pakistan attaches to stronger Pakistan-U.S. cooperation in diverse fields. He expressed satisfaction at the positive direction and momentum of bilateral relations since the visit of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif to Washington. The Ministerial Review of the Bilateral Strategic Dialogue held subsequently has further sustained this process.

With regards to Afghanistan, the importance of deeper consultations between Pakistan and the U.S. was underscored during the meeting. The Special Assistant reiterated Pakistan’s support for the democratic process in Afghanistan and stressed that smooth security and economic transitions were also fundamental for stability in Afghanistan and the region. Both sides also discussed the post-2014 situation and matters relating to Afghan peace and reconciliation process.

Although Ambassador Burns has visited Pakistan earlier also, this is his first visit as Deputy Secretary of State.

8 May 2014

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