The U.S. envoy for Afghanistan Reconciliation Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad met with top military and civilian officials of Pakistan after pausing talks with Taliban political leaders.

The Embassy of the United States in Islamabad said in a statement that Ambassador Khalilzad met with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Chief of Army staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and other government officials in Islamabad on Friday.

The statement further added “In his meetings with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, and other government officials, Ambassador Khalilzad discussed the current status of U.S.-Taliban talks.”

“He welcomed Pakistan’s support for a reduction in violence, ceasefire, and a successful conclusion of intra-Afghan negotiations as well as regional support for these goals. He also underscored the economic and security benefits peace can bring to the region,” the statement added.

Ambassador Khalilzad on Thursday announced a brief pause in peace talks with Taliban leaders, a day after Taliban claimed attack near Bagram airfield which killed 2 civilians and wounded at least 70 others.

“When I met the Talibs today, I expressed outrage about yesterday’s attack on Bagram, which recklessly killed two and wounded dozens of civilians. #Taliban must show they are willing & able to respond to Afghan desire for peace,” Ambassador Khalilzad said in a Twitter post.

He also added “We’re taking a brief pause for them to consult their leadership on this essential topic.”

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