Top Senate advices ‘honesty about differences’ to rebuild America-Pakistan ties

The senior member of the US Senate Bob Casey advised over strengthening the United States’ and Pakistan’s close relations on Friday, saying “to be honest about the difference, that’s important, to be honest” to improve two countries relations.

While pointing out historical US-Pakistan relations, the member of the Senate committee on foreign relations Senator Jeanne Shaheen said the “relationship has cooled, somewhat is the last few years”.

According to Dawn, the member of the Senate subcommittee on Near Eastern and Southern and central Asian affairs Senator Shaheen acknowledged the need of effort to rebuild the close relationship and, also urged the Pakistani-Americans communities to play their big rule by getting involved inside American political process.

Shaheen said: “I think it is important for us to figure out how to right the relationship so that we can continue to be very strong allies.”

The reception organized by the Pakistani American Political Action Committee (PAKPAC) for the 116th Congress on Wednesday night in Washington, was attended by two senior members of the Democratic Party including 20 lawmakers. Their presence at a Pakistan reception was a pleasant surprise as during recent days US senators and congressmen have maintained a safe distance from Islamabad.

Trump’s administration was seeking Pakistan’s cooperation to ensure a graceful end to US’ longest military engagement, 17-year-old Afghan war.

Being honest about his views about US-Pakistan ties, Casey urged both countries to ensure that “we continue to engage even when we have disagreements”, and also on a most important area of cooperation.

Casey said, “There’s no place in the world that has suffered more gravely from terrorism and terrorist attacks than Pakistan.”

Explaining why often the US seems frustrates with Pakistan, Senator Casey said, “Sometimes it works. Sometimes we do not share enough information. Sometimes it is a breakdown.”

He said, “And every president, I think, should have the right to question the relationship, to ask more questions about the bilateral relationship,” adding, “But I think it is of critical importance that we continue to engage to defeat terrorists and to counter any terrorist activity.”

While noting that Pakistan and the US have had difficulties maintaining strong their trade and economic relationship, Casey said, “We should continue to pursue that because the Pakistani people have a lot to offer the world and have a lot to offer our markets. And I hope we can continue that.”

Senator Shaheed reminded Pakistani-Americans that “democracy is only as good as the people who engage in it”, and in order to influence policy-making, both need to start getting engaged.

She said: “It is really important because that’s how we make policies. Unless we engage, we are not going to change the things we disagree with.”


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