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Pak foreign minister Khawaja Asif arrives US in efforts to improve ties

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif on Wednesday left for a three-day visit to the US as part of efforts to rebuild bilateral ties frayed after President Donald Trump accused the country of sheltering terror groups.

Trump while announcing his new policy for Afghanistan had also praised India for its development efforts in the war-torn country.

In response, Pakistan had said that Trump through his remarks ignored the efforts in the war against terrorism.

Pakistan also asked the US to postpone a planned trip by its special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Alice Wells to Islamabad.

Asif also delayed a visit to Washington for which he was invited by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

But the relations improved slightly after a meeting between Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Vice President Mike Pence on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly last month, according to an official of the Foreign Office.

“The foreign minister during the current trip will meet Secretary Tillerson and other officials to discuss matters pertaining to regional peace and security,” the official said.

Some senior US officials may also visit Pakistan after the thaw in tension as both sides agree that mutual cooperation was vital for peace in Afghanistan, according to the official.

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