New US policy is a 'game-changer', says Ashraf Ghani

New US policy is a 'game-changer', says Ashraf Ghani

United States officials say they are frustrated that Afghan Taliban and Haqqani militants are afforded freedom of movement and are able to transport weapons and raise funds inside Pakistan, something their Islamabad counterparts staunchly deny.

President Donald Trump has vowed to get tough with Pakistan unless it changed its behaviour, with US officials threatening further reductions in aid and mooting targeted sanctions against Pakistani officials.

The relations between Pakistan and the United States have witnessed marked improvement over the past few weeks following a series of recent interactions, including Prime Minister Abbasi and VP Pence's meeting in NY on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session in NY.

"Both sides will have the opportunity to review the gamut of multifaceted bilateral partnership, including the New Development Partnership, hold consultations and coordinate on furthering the shared objective of promoting peace, security, stability, and prosperity in Afghanistan and efforts to combat the menace of terrorism, and discuss regional and global issues of mutual interest", the statement added.

"We have made some very specific requests of Pakistan in order for them to take action to undermine the support that the Taliban receives and the other terrorist organisations receive in Pakistan", Tillerson said.

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The visit was the first to nuclear-armed Pakistan by a senior Trump administration official and comes months after the US President angrily accused Islamabad of harbouring "agents of chaos" who could attack US-led North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces in neighbouring Afghanistan. Islamabad denies the charges.

"Pakistan needs to, I think, take a clear-eyed view of the situation that they're confronted with in terms of the number of terrorist organizations that find safe haven inside of Pakistan", Tillerson said after concluding the talks.

"We are committed in the war against terror. And we are looking forward to moving ahead with the USA and building a tremendous relationship". Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif also visited Washington, where he met Secretary Tillerson. "External Affairs Minister will call on the visiting dignitary".

Tillerson's visit to Afghanistan set social media aflutter Tuesday after Afghan officials released a photo that had seemingly been doctored to disguise the fact that it took place at Bagram, a secure military base, rather than Kabul, which was hit by multiple militant attacks last week.

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