Afghan Pullout: Pakistan Has “Serious Concerns” Over US Plans

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 Context

Pakistan has “serious concerns” over certain issues related to US plans for Afghanistan’s future after President Obama’s announcement of a gradual pullout of 33,000 soldiers by Sep 2012. Whilst Kabul and other major capitals worldwide welcomed Obama’s announcement, Pakistan gave a wary response and refrained from giving any clear statement. The foreign ministry said in a brief statement that Islamabad has “ongoing engagement on issues of peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan and counter-terrorism”, adding that those issues will be discussed in details next week when the core group of the US, Pakistan and Afghanistan meet in Kabul. Meanwhile, a foreign ministry official, who requested anonymity, admitted that Pakistan has certain reservations over the Afghan Endgame, adding that Islamabad is also disappointed with US attempts to not involve Pakistan in peace negotiations with the Afghan Taliban.