Aug 23, 2009

Pakistan, US to revive strategic dialogue

Obama reaches out to religious parties in Pakistan ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the United States have agreed to revive the Strategic Dialogue and upgrade it to ministerial level for rejuvenating their strategic partnership.

The fourth round of the Strategic Dialogue will be held in Islamabad during Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s visit to Pakistan in October, diplomatic sources told Dawn on Wednesday.

Ms Clinton would co-chair the dialogue with Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi.

The US decision to have Ms Clinton as co-chair of the dialogue marks the upgradation of talks as far as Washington is concerned.

The notion that the US viewed its relations with Pakistan through the Afghan prism was further reinforced when Pakistan’s request for holding the fourth round of the strategic dialogue was cold shouldered at least on two occasions this year.

Moreover, after the appointment of Richard Holbrooke as special envoy for the region most of the interaction between the two countries was channelled through his office.

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