Islamabad: Pakistan is still the United States of America's ally in the war on terror. US AfPak Ambassador Marc Grossman when asked whether the US's strategic ties with Pakistan will be affected by Osama bin Laden's killing said that Pakistan is crucial to peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan. Grossman also called Osama's killing a shared victory of the US, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
"End of Osama is a sheer achievement for the United States, Pakistan and Afghanistan. The United States, Pakistan and Afghanistan have commitments to end terror. Extremism is not going to affect our relationship (US-Pakistan) in any way," said Grossman after trilateral talks with Pakistan Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and Afghanistan's Deputy Foreign Minister Jaweed Ludin.
"Thousands of Pakistanis and soldiers have been a victim of terror. We are trying to bring safety and peace to Pakistan. The process of Afghanistan reconciliation needs efforts of regional countries especially Pakistan," Grossman said.
Bashir admitted that Pakistan was not happy with the drone strike by US forces inside Pakistani territory, but his country was committed towards building a secure and stable region.
"This is a good beginning (Osama's killing). We now start working together to write any chapter on stability in the region. Drone attacks have been a issue of discussion between Pakistan and the US. We have got to look towards future in building a secure, stable and prosperous region," said Bashir.
Afghanistan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Jaweed Ludin thanked Pakistan for its support in the war on terror and in rebuilding his country.
"We continue to receive the support of our friends in Pakistan. We share a lot of challenges. A new emphasis is needed in the trilateral relationship. We look forward to engaging with Pakistan," said Ludin.
Osama bin Laden was killed on early Monday morning by a team of US Navy SEALs commandos in a raid at his mansion in Abbottbad, about 60 kms from Pakistan's capital Islamabad. The Osama hideout in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province and just a few hundred meters away from Pakistan Military Academy has, however, raised doubts about Islamabad's claims that it had no clue about the al Qaeda chief who also masterminded 9/11.
Some big questions that follow Osama's killing:
Was there a US-Pak deal on Osama?
What happens to US-Pak ties now?
Is Pak too embarrassed to admit the truth?
Will the flow of US funds to Pakistan dry up?
How long did Osama stay in the Abbottabad house?
If the US decides to pull out of Afghanistan how will it impact the balance of power in the region?