NAWAIWAQT GROUP
 
 
 
Pak-US DCG ironing out thorny issues
 
 
 

ISLAMABAD - The Defence Consultative Group (DCG) of Pakistan and US resumed talks on Monday after eighteen months to discuss host of bilateral issues including the US Coalition Support Fund (CSF), training and equipment as well as regional security.According to official sources, the two-day 21st DCG meeting commenced at the defence ministry to review military cooperation and progress on previous meetings. The US side was led by Under Secretary of Defence for Policy Dr James Miller and Ambassador Richard Olson while Defence Secretary Lt-Gen (r) Asif Yasin Malik led Pakistan side.“The meeting will focus on regional security environment and challenges faced alongside Pak-Afghan border and finalise schedule for future meetings,” a defence ministry statement said. “The DCG meeting is discussing bilateral cooperation and regional security,” US Embassy spokesperson Rian Harris told The Nation. She said the Embassy would issue detailed statement on conclusion of the meeting today (Tuesday).Other knowledgeable sources believed that DCG talks would largely focus on US Coalition Support Fund to Pakistan for its logistics services provided to the US and Nato in Afghanistan and capacity building of Pakistani security through training and equipment for tackling the challenges related to terrorism.“These talks do partially cover intelligence cooperation between the countries, but these mainly focus on issues related to logistics support provided to the US and Nato forces and their training and equipment,” leading defence analyst Lt-Gen (r) Talat Masood said in response to a query.The DCG level talks collapsed after Islamabad stopped claiming CSF in the wake of May 2011 US raid in Abbottabad that reportedly killed al-Qaeda chief Osma bin Laden. Relations between the two states further deteriorated following killing of 24 Pakistani soldiers manning the Salala security post on Pak-Afghan border, prompting Islamabad to block the Nato and ISAF ground supplies to Afghanistan.The relations started to normalise after US Secretary of States Hilary Clinton tender apology over Salala attack which led to signing of new bilateral deal, leading to resumption of Nato ground supplies through Pakistan. The US also released $1.1 billion payment to Pakistan against outstanding costs under the CSF.

 
 
on epaper page 1
 
 
 
Comments
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
NAWAIWAQT GROUP