WASHINGTON: The United States has expressed appreciation for Pakistan's efforts to advance the Afghan peace process and stability in South Asia, including by encouraging the Taliban to engage in substantive negotiations.
"Pakistan has much to gain and will continue to have a critical role, will be well-positioned to have a role in supporting the outcome that not only the United States seeks, but that many of our International partners, many of the countries in the region also seek," State Department Spokesman Ned Price told reporters on Monday.
"So, we'll continue to work and to communicate closely with our Pakistani partners on this," he added.
Last week, Pakistan's National Security Advisor, Moeed Yusuf, met his American counterpart Jake Sullivan and agreed to "sustain the momentum in Pak-US cooperation". It was their second meeting, at which Afghanistan and several other issues were discussed, after Geneva in May, as part of the high-level bilateral engagements between the two countries.
"The (Pakistani) National Security Advisor did not meet with the Secretary (of State, Tony Blinken)," Price said, explaining that "we were traveling all last week."
Responding to a question, Price noted the recent statement of China on the Afghan peace process. Beijing said the ongoing peace process needed to be Afghan-led and Afghan-owned.
"So, there is an alignment of interests, at least in some areas, when it comes to what we seek in Afghanistan, what the PRC (People's Republic of China) seeks in Afghanistan, and what the broader international community seeks in Afghanistan. We will continue to explore how we might be able to coordinate and work together towards that shared goal," the spokesman added.