ISI chief in US for talks

ISLAMABAD: The head of Pakistan’s powerful spy agency headed for Washington on Wednesday for unscheduled talks, the military said, days after the United States suspended a third of military aid over deepening tensions in their relationship. Pasha was going to Washington to “coordinate intelligence matters”, the military said in a statement. “He is going there to discuss the intelligence coordination,” Inter-Services Public Relations Director General, Major General Athar Abbas, told a foreign news agency. “Relations have not broken down. Intelligence sharing is going on… We are talking to each other despite difficulties,” another senior military official said on condition of anonymity.

A security official told AFP that Pakistan wanted a “contract” with the CIA to formalise intelligence cooperation in the decade-long fight against al Qaeda that would safeguard against unilateral American activities. Meanwhile, US CENTCOM (US Central Command) chief General James Mattis arrived in Pakistan to consult senior Pakistani military and security officials, the US embassy said. Mattis met with Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Ashfaq Parbez Kayani and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Khalid Wynne to “share perspectives on the current relationship between the two militaries and to review the way ahead”, it said in a statement on Wednesday. This was Mattis’ fifth visit to Pakistan. agencies – Dailytimes