Washington: US special envoy Marc Grossman`s
visit to Pakistan for consultation on exploratory talks with
Taliban has been put off as Islamabad rejected the move, a
State Department official said.
The US had made a request for a visit of Grossman,
Obama`s special representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan,
as part of his itinerary to hold consultations with the US
allies in the Middle East on a new move to involve the Taliban
in Afghan reconciliation process.
"We received word that the Pakistan government felt that
it would be best to wait (for Grossman`s visit) until this
parliamentary review is concluded," State Department spokesman
Mark Toner told a news briefing.
The development indicates further deterioration in Pak-US
relationship which has been on a continuous downswing since
the May 2 US raid on Osama bin Laden`s hideout in Abbottabad.
But, in response to questions, Toner said that Pakistan
would continue to play a role in Afghan reconciliation
On Pak-US differences, the State Department spokesman
said there was no alternative other than for two countries to
work on their divergences.
"There`s no other solution here other than to work
through our differences. We absolutely view Pakistan as an
essential partner to this Afghan-led reconciliation process,"
The US, he said, would wait for the outcome of the
Pakistani parliamentary committee review of the nature of
relationship between the two countries, and insisted that it
is unlikely go beyond the deep regret which it expressed for
the November 26 NATO attack which killed 24 Pakistani
The Washington Post had reported earlier that Pakistan
had turned down the request of Grossman to travel to Islamabad
during his current trip to the region that started this week.
The paper quoting US officials said this indicated
Washington`s patience with Pakistan was growing thinner as the
country was increasingly standing upfront against the US and
was saying "no" more often than ever.