Democrat Senator Robert Menendez on Tuesday accused Pakistan of double-dealing and said that the US mission in Afghanistan failed as Islamabad offered a “safe haven” to the Taliban. While welcoming the nomination of Donald Armin Blome as US Ambassador to Pakistan, Menendez called for a serious conversation with the Imran Khan-led Pakistan government on the path forward in bilateral relations.
“Islamabad offered a safe haven to the Taliban even as its militants targetted and killed US troops. We need to have a serious conversation with the Pakistani Government in our path forward,” New Jersey Senator Menendez, who was chairing the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, said as quoted by ANI.
Senator Robert Menendez also welcomed the nomination of Eric Garcetti as the US Ambassador to India and said that “as a member of the QUAD, along with the US-Japan-Australia, India is playing a greater role in helping maintain free and open Indo-Pacific. In September, Biden administration hosted 1st-ever in-person Quad Summit.”
Tensions between Pakistan and US
Meanwhile, Menendez welcomed Blome’s nomination as the new US Ambassador to Pakistan amid “challenging moment” in the US-Pakistan bilateral relationship. Notably the tensions between Washington and Islamabad have soared in recent days after Pakistan decided to boycott the ‘Democracy Summit’ organised by US President Joe Biden. It is believed that Pakistan declined the United States’ invitation for the Democracy Summit under pressure from China, which was not invited by Washington.
Additionally, following the Taliban takeover of Kabul, the US had also announced that it is going to be looking at its ties with Pakistan in a bid to formulate the role America wants Islamabad to play in the future of the war-ravaged nation. When asked about how Washington sees Islamabad’s involvement in Afghanistan, US State Secretary Antony Blinken in September said that Pakistan has a “multiplicity of interests” including some that are in “clear conflict” with that of the US. Blinken added that India’s involvement in the war-torn nation has influenced some “detrimental” actions by Pakistan.