US Secretary Antony Blinken Discussed Pakistan’s economy and Afghanistan-related issues in a phone conversation with Foreign Minister Bilawal-Bhutto Zardari.
According to State Department spokesman Matthew Miller, Secretary Blinken underlined a “productive US-Pakistan partnership” in a phone call with FM Bilawal.
The meeting came amid a surge in terrorist attacks in Pakistan, and local authorities blame Kabul for harbouring militants, particularly the outlawed Tehreek-e-Pakistan (TTP).
The US reiterated last week that the Afghan Taliban must prevent their country from being used for terrorist attacks. At the same time, the top brass of the Pakistani Army stated that one of the main factors affecting the security of Islamabad is the sanctuaries and freedom of action available to terrorists of the TTP and other groups of that ilk in Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, the de facto authorities in Kabul rejected all allegations and reiterated that they would not allow individuals or groups to use Afghanistan soil against neighbouring countries, including Pakistan.
Since ending the ceasefire last November between TTP and the Pakistani government, the militants have increased their attacks in Pakistan targeting military officers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Punjab provinces.
Over the last week, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province has experienced its fourth terrorist attack when authorities thwarted another militants attack on a checkpoint in the provincial capital of Peshawar.
The most recent attack happened shortly after suicide bombers struck a compound in Bara Bazar, Khyber District, and detonated their bombs, killing 4 police officers and injuring 10 more.
According to a report released earlier this month by the think tank Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies, the first half of the current year saw a steady and concerning increase in terror and suicide attacks, which resulted in the deaths of 389 people across the country.