US Secretary for State John Tillerson is set to travel to Pakistan on Thursday to meet Pakistan’s foreign minister and foreign minister of India to discuss a US-Pakistan nuclear deal.
The US-Pakistani nuclear deal, which will see the two countries increase cooperation in nuclear energy, was announced on Wednesday by US President Donald Trump.
“This is an opportunity for the United States to discuss the potential future of our partnership, the relationship between our two countries, and our commitment to upholding the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty,” Tillerson told reporters in Islamabad.
“It is an important conversation that we have with the Pakistani leadership.”
Tillerson has been in Pakistan for the past week and is expected to hold talks with Pakistan’s top nuclear official on the sidelines of the G20 summit.
Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari has already announced his opposition to the deal, while the US has been one of Pakistan’s biggest backers.
“The US and Pakistan are two countries that have different visions for the future,” Tillerson said.
“It’s a difficult relationship and one we’re very keen to avoid.”
Tensions between Pakistan and the US rose after the US killed a Pakistani spy in the city of Abbottabad, where US forces were conducting a drone strike in January 2017.
The US said the strike was in response to the “incursions” of Pakistanis in the tribal region of North Waziristan.