WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump authorised the resumption of Pakistan’s participation in a US military training and educational programme in order to strengthen military-to-military cooperation on shared priorities and “advance US national security”, senior US diplomat Alice Wells said on Saturday.
“The overall security assistance suspension for Pakistan remains in effect,” said a tweet by Wells, the in-charge of South Asia affairs at the US State Department.
The decision to resume Islamabad’s participation in the coveted International Military Education and Training Programme, or IMET — for more than a decade a pillar of US-Pakistani military ties — was first announced by the State Department last month.
However, the announcement has been reiterated by Acting Assistant Secretary Wells, a day after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reached out to Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa in the aftermath of the assassination of top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, vowing to remain firm against Iran.
The conversation, which was part of the secretary’s telephonic contacts with leaders around the world, was disclosed by Pompeo on Twitter hours after the Foreign Office expressed “concern” about peace and stability in the Middle East.