ISLAMABAD: The armed forces have kept themselves out of politics, army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa said, adding that it wanted to remain in this way.
“Will act according to the promise,” he said while hinting at not seeking another extension as the chief of the army staff of Pakistan. He made such remarks in an informal chat at a lunch at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington.
The army chief is on a week-long visit to the United States where he met with senior officials of the Biden administration.
“Revival of a weakened country’s economy should be the top priority of all sections of the society,” COAS Qamar said and stressed that the country would not be able to achieve its goals without a strong economy.
He said: “There can be no diplomacy without a strong economy.”
US, Pakistan agree on cooperation to avoid humanitarian crisis
The United States and Pakistan have agreed on the necessity for cooperation to avoid humanitarian crisis and improve peace and stability in the region, the armed forces media wing statement said on Wednesday.
The consensus was reached during a meeting between COAS Qamar and US officials, the Inter-Services Public Relations said.
The chief of the army staff called on Secretary of Defence General Lloyd James Austin III (retd), National Security Advisor Jacob Jeremiah Sullivan, and Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Ruth Sherman.
“During calls matters of mutual interest, regional security situation and bilateral cooperation in various fields were discussed,” the Inter-Services Public Relations said.
Severe floods engulfed large swathes of the country in late August, killing nearly 1,700 people and causing damage estimated at $30 billion. The devastation prompted Pakistan to appeal to the world to support it in order to meet the challenges.
The army chief thanked US officials for their support. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken last week announced another $10 million for food security assistance, in addition to a total of $53.1 million to support disaster resilience and flood response in Pakistan.
Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa reiterated that assistance from global partners shall be vital for the rehabilitation of the flood victims in Pakistan.
“Both sides agreed that Pakistan and US have a long history of bilateral cooperation and shall continue improving through economic ties, trade, and investment.”
COAS Qamar offered “heartfelt condolence” on the deaths and devastation caused by the hurricane in Florida. “Pakistan fully understands the loss and pain of victims’ families as Pakistan is suffering from similar effects of climate change.”
Hurricane Ian has so far killed at least 103 in Florida. Additionally, an estimated 628,285 homes and businesses were still without power in Florida early on Monday.