WASHINGTON: Spokesperson for the United States Department of State Heather Nauert remarked that US supports free and transparent elections in Pakistan.
“The United States supports free, fair, and transparent, accountable elections in Pakistan as we do in other countries around the world. The United States along with other international partners has supported Pakistan’s implementation of its historic 2017 electoral reforms law,” she said while addressing a press briefing on Tuesday.
“My understanding is that this is the first time that law will actually be put into effect for these elections. We hope that the new comprehensive and transparent legal framework facilitates the peaceful transfer of civilian power to a democratically elected government,” she added.
Elections in Pakistan are expected to be held on July 25, while the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz will complete its five-year term on May 31.
After this, a caretaker setup headed by interim prime minister Justice (retd) Nasirul Mulk will take over to ensure transparent and free electoral process.
When asked about the further investigation into the case of American diplomat who was involved in a traffic accident in Islamabad, she shared: “I don’t have any updates to provide beyond what we’ve provided already.”
‘US envoys being ‘treated badly’ in Pakistan’
On May 24, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had said that the US officials in Pakistan are “not being treated well by the Pakistani government”.
While presenting his testimony before the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, Pompeo said: “My officers, our state department officers are being treated badly as well, folks working in the embassies and councils [and]in other places are not being treated well by the Pakistani government either.”
He remarked that this “real problem” that needs to be taken measure of.
With regards to the new South Asia strategy of the US, he said “we have been clear with Pakistan that ensuring reconciliation, peace, and security in Afghanistan in large part depends on Pakistan’s willingness to crack down on terrorist safe havens and instigators of terrorist activity in its own country.”
Pompeo also shared that the US has released “far less funds in 2018” as compared to the previous year to Pakistan.