No Strategic Dialogue Possible with Pak without Army, ISI: Holbrooke

USA’s Af-Pak envoy has said that no strategic dialogue can be held with Pakistan without actively involving its military and that talks should not be at the expense of India, reports said.

“How can you have a strategic dialogue without including the military,” Special US Representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan Richard Holbrooke was quoted as saying while talking to reporters at the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department.

This is why Pakistan Army Chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani and ISI Chief Lt Gen Shuja Pasha have been included in the US-Pakistan strategic dialogue scheduled to be held in Washington on March 24 which will be co-chaired by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmoud Qureshi.

“If we have a strategic dialogue in our country, we’re going to include the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff or some other representative. So we are very pleased that General Kayani is part of this delegation. We think that it’s one country, one government, one team. It was their decision, and we welcomed it,” Holbrooke was quoted as saying.

In response to a query, Holbrooke said that the strategic dialogue with Pakistan was not at the expense of India or any other country, said reports.

“We have an important strategic dialogue with India and with other countries, including China. Makes it all the more important we have one with Pakistan. But this is a bilateral dialogue. This strategic dialogue with Pakistan is not at the expense of any other country in the region,” he was quoted as saying.

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