Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper reported a day ago that the Pakistani government was determined to hand over a number of its ground and airspace military bases to the United States so that Washington could support its presence in Afghanistan.
David F. Hilvey, the assistant secretary of Defense for the Indo-Pacific region, told the Senate Military Services Committee a week ago that the United States would continue to discuss the issue of Pakistan because this country is essential to Afghan peace.
Responding to a question from Sen. Joe McCain, a Democratic senator from West Virginia, the Pentagon official said: “Please specify your demands on Pakistan and clearly state what you want from the US intelligence service. “What role are you looking for in Pakistan in the future?”
“Pakistan has played a key role in Afghanistan,” the Under Secretary of Defense for India and the Pacific said in response. They have supported the Afghan dialogue process. “Pakistan has allowed us to use its airspace and provided our military presence in Afghanistan.”
“We are continuing our talks with Pakistan because their support and cooperation are important for Afghanistan’s future,” Mr. Hilvey added. “Pakistan is vital to the future of peace in Afghanistan.”
Diplomatic sources in Washington told The Dawn that in the past, Pakistan has always allowed its land and space to be used to facilitate American military presence in Afghanistan and will continue to do so in the future.
Earlier in the day, Republican Sen. Kevin Sen. Kramer of North Dakota asked the Undersecretary of Defense how the United States needs humanitarian and inhumane capabilities in the region to prevent Afghanistan from returning to a haven for terrorists.
In response, the Pentagon official said: “What we cannot access in Afghanistan is as urgent as space. “There are also some other resources in the region that can not be accessed, and the United States will provide these facilities in the region according to its needs.”
But Pakistan’s foreign ministry has denied this in the latest case. “We do not have any US air and military bases in Pakistan, and no such offer has been made,” said Zahid Hafit Chaudhry, a spokesman for the Pakistani Foreign Ministry. “Any claim in this regard is baseless and should be avoided.”
The reports come as US and NATO forces begin withdrawing from Afghanistan on May 1, 2021, and are expected to do so by September 11, 2021; Some political analysts in Afghanistan now believe that Pakistan, on the one hand, is fanning the flames of war in Afghanistan and, on the other hand, is trying to seize good opportunities from the United States and the international community to strengthen its governing foundations.