ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Monday that Pakistan wants to strengthen relations with the United States in all sectors, adding that Pakistan will continue to play its role for peace and stability in Afghanistan.
The premier made these remarks in a meeting with US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel who arrived in Islamabad earlier on Monday.
Hagel arrived in Pakistan at a time when renewed tensions have emerged over US missile strikes as well as interruption of US military shipments out of Afghanistan through the main border crossings into Pakistan.
During the meeting between the prime minister and Hagel held at the Prime Minister House, topic related the bilateral relations and regional situation with particular reference to draw down of international troops next year from Afghanistan were discussed.
Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani, Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, Federal Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Tariq Fatemi accompanied the prime minister, while US special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan James Dobbins was also present on the occasion.
The sources said that Hagel hoped to work with Pakistan to deepen the security partnership and reassure it of continued US assistance in building its military capacity.
Earlier, Hagel called on Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif and discussed US-Pak cooperation in the region.
The sources said that security situation on Pak-Afghan border and the Afghan peace process also came under discussion.