US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R Sherman, who is currently on a visit to Pakistan, said that President Joe Biden would talk to Prime Minister Imran Khan ‘soon’.
The News reported that Sherman made this statement while talking to a group of editors. She added that the US government knew that Pakistan was concerned over a bill proposing sanctions against Pakistan introduced recently in the US Senate.
“We have an idea that every country wants to have a telephone conversation with US President. I am sure that this conversation will be held with Imran Khan soon,” she was quoted as saying.
Further, she said that this contact between the two leaders will establish soon and that “it should not mean anything else”.
She was of the opinion that there was no need for further speculation about the issue.
When asked about the anti-Pakistan bill presented in the US Senate, Sherman said that hundreds of such bills are introduced and thousands of people are behind them. “But we are aware of Pakistan’s concerns and are looking at the situation.”
Last month, Foreign Office had described a draft bill introduced in the US Senate, seeking sanctions against Pakistan and the Afghan Taliban, as ‘unwarranted’.
In a statement, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed had also rejected allegations that Pakistan provided any military support to the Afghan Taliban.
These reactions came a day after 22 US senators from the Republican Party had moved a draft bill that sought sanctions against the Taliban and called for assessing the alleged role Pakistan played since 2001 in supporting the insurgent group.
The 57-page draft bill, called ‘Afghanistan Counterterrorism, Oversight, and Accountability Act of 2021,’ had several references to Pakistan.
“An assessment of support by state and non-state actors, including the government of Pakistan for the Taliban between 2001 and 2020, including the provision of sanctuary space, financial support, intelligence support, logistics and medical support, training, equipping, and tactical, operational, or strategic direction,” read the draft bill.