Published On: Thu, Aug 27th, 2015

U.S. commander, Pakistan military leaders discuss security issues

Pakistan Army soldier stands guard during an operation in FATA

Chief of the U.S. Central Command Gen Lloyd Austin held talks on Wednesday with senior Pakistani military leaders on security issues, the military said.

The CENTCOM commander met Pakistan’s Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Rashad Mahmood and Army Chief General Raheel Sharif at the army’s headquarters in Rawalpindi.

The U.S. CENTCOM commander appreciated the Pakistan Army’s sacrifices in war on terror for bringing peace in the country and the region, an army statement said.

He also “acknowledged the role played by the Pakistan Armed Forces in fighting the menace of terrorism.”

The two sides also discussed matters of mutual interest and regional security, the statement said.

The visit came amidst tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan that has also led to the cancellation of Pakistan-brokered Afghan peace talks.

The United States supports the peace talks and its senior officials attended the first round of talks near the Pakistani capital on July 7 as observer.

Sources said Afghanistan was also on the agenda of the talks between the CENTCOM commander and the Pakistani military leaders as both sides are in favor of the revival of the talks.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said his country will now itself hold the peace talks with the Taliban.

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