US and Pakistan have stressed on the need for ‘dialogue’ among ‘all parties’ in the region to resolve the Kashmir issue.
“The US and Pakistan emphasized the importance of meaningful dialogue in support of peaceful resolution of outstanding issues, including Kashmir,” said a US-Pakistan joint statement, issued by the US State Department a day after the two countries concluded their sixth strategic dialogue.
The dialogue was chaired by US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Pakistani counterpart Sartaj Aziz
The joint statement has called on “all parties” in the region “to act with maximum restraint”.
The statement said that the detention of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) leader Maulana Masood Azhar was an step in the right direction by Pakistan to bring the perpetrators of the Pathankot terror attack to justice. On January, 2 2016, an attack at the Pathankot air base in Punjab had left 7 Indian soldiers dead. But there was no direct mention of India in the entire joint statement.
US also acknowledged Pakistan’s ongoing efforts to harmonise its strategic trade controls with those of the multilateral export control regimes. The US also lauded Pakistan’s “proactive engagement” with the international community.
According to the joint statement, Pakistan affirmed that it remains committed to pursuing measures aimed at building confidence and lessening the risk of armed conflict. Both sides recognised the shared interest in strategic stability in South Asia and in pursuing increased transparency. They also reaffirmed their commitment to countering terrorism including by targeting all terrorists without discrimination.
Aziz affirmed Pakistan’s resolve to take effective action against UN listed terrorists and terror organisations which include al-Qaeda, Haqqani Network, Lashkar-e-Toiba and its affiliates.
The joint delegation also discussed the progress of the TAPI (Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India) gas pipeline project.
The ground breaking ceremony of the TAPI project at Mary, Turkmenistan in December 2015 was attended by India’s Vice President and Pakistan PM.