Islamabad on Monday denied reports of US military base construction inside Pakistani soil as international troops are working to pull out of Afghanistan
Pakistan’s Foreign Office in a press statement said that “there is no US military or airbase in Pakistan, nor is any such proposal envisaged. Any speculation on this account is baseless and irresponsible and should be avoided”.
It was stated that Pak-US currently have an essential structure of cooperation in terms of ground and air-lines of communications since 2001.
According to the statement, no new agreements were put on the table in regards to the construction of the military base.
Earlier, Ariana News (ATN) in a report claimed US forces have already begun constructing a large military base across the “Durand Line” in the Shalozan Kurram Agency area of Zazai Aryub district in Pakistan the area borders Paktia province in Afghanistan.
Paktia’s provincial council told the media outlet that “the base is under construction 8km from the Durand Line inside Pakistan and “supplies are being delivered via air and ground every day”.
This comes at as US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin in a telephonic conversation with General Qamar Javed Bajwa on discussed regional objectives and interests.
Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby in a recent statement said “during the call, Secretary Austin reiterated his appreciation for Pakistan’s support for Afghanistan Peace Negotiations and expressed his desire to continue to build on the U.S. – Pakistan bilateral relationship,”.
“Secretary Austin and General Bajwa discussed regional dynamics and our shared interest in security and stability in the region,” the statement read.
Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi in an Interview with VOA Urdu said that Islamabad supports the idea of an inclusive government in Afghanistan, a political settlement that covers the overall demands of the Afghans for reaching a prolonged peace.
He stressed that stability in Afghanistan depends on its people’s participation in the peace process and the involvement of every political party is essential.
He added that Pakistan most of the time has motivated political parties to work for bringing peace in Afghanistan, he added that the Afghans have an independent nation and they should decide for themselves.
He said that the people of Afghanistan “must decide for themselves”, what type of government, constitution, and national peace they want.
The future of Afghanistan depends on the will of its people and political parties involved in its affairs.
Former US Central Command Commander, General Joseph Votel stressed that Pakistan should pressurize the Taliban over closing their secrete bases in the country.
Pakistan must prevent Taliban from carrying out attack on Afghan soil through Pakistan and must return to peace.
He further elaborated that Pakistan still has much influence over the Taliban leaders and should play an honest and better role with Afghanistan in the matter of the peace process.
He said when he was in the army, he worked closely with the Pakistani military leaders especially General Bajwa, and the US repeatedly worked to convince and persuade Pakistan to support peace efforts in Afghanistan but the progress was not enough.