11:56 GMT +317 October 2019
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    President Donald Trump speaks during the Public Safety Medal of Valor awards ceremony in the East Room of the White House, Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018, in Washington.

    Trump's Remark a Departure From His Past Stance - Pakistan Foreign Ministry

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    US President Trump made overtures to the current Pakistani government on Thursday, saying that he looks forward to meeting the new leadership in Pakistan.

    Pakistan has welcomed the remarks made by US President Donald Trump on US-Pakistani bilateral ties while admitting that this was indeed a departure from his stance in the past. Pakistan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Thursday that it will look forward to engage with the US at the top leadership levels.

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    "US President Donald Trump's remarks are indeed a departure from his tweets in January 2018. We look forward to positive engagement with the US at top leadership levels," spokesperson for the Pakistan government Muhammad Faisal said while addressing media on Thursday.

    Trump on Thursday said that he "looks forward to meeting the new leadership in Pakistan"; a month after he wrote to Prime Minister Imran Khan seeking Pakistan's assistance in achieving a negotiated settlement of the Afghan war.

    "We want to have a great relationship with Pakistan, but they house the enemy, they take care of the enemy," he said. "We just can't do that. So, I look forward to meeting with the folks — and the new leadership in Pakistan. We will be doing that in the not-too-distant a future. I ended the $1.3 billion we paid, it's like water, we just do it," Trump said on Thursday.

    The bilateral relationship between the two countries took a hit last year when the Trump administration discontinued the $1.3 billion in foreign aid funds to Pakistan last year. In November 2018, Trump had accused Pakistan of not supporting the US war on terror while Imran Khan blamed the US policy for failure in Afghanistan and suggested introspection in its strategy in Afghanistan.

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    bilateral relations, aid, Afghan War, Donald Trump, Afghanistan, United States, Pakistan
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