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2-min read

US Senator for FTA with Pakistan for Pushing Taliban for Peace Talks to End Afghan War

The Senator, who was recently in Afghanistan, said that the IS was on the rise in Afghanistan. The Senator said Trump has destroyed IS virtually on his watch and put Iran on the run.

PTI

Updated:January 2, 2019, 11:09 PM IST
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US Senator for FTA with Pakistan for Pushing Taliban for Peace Talks to End Afghan War
South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. (Image; Reuters)
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Washington: A Republican Senator wants the US to offer Pakistan a free trade agreement (FTA) as an incentive for Islamabad to push the Taliban to the peace table to end the Afghan war.

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, who is considered close to President Donald Trump, told CNN in an interview that if Pakistan helped the US in bringing the

Taliban to the table for negotiations, then the US would focus on counterterrorism and the IS.

The Senator, who was recently in Afghanistan, said that the IS was on the rise in Afghanistan.

"Right now, after having been back from Afghanistan, I can tell you that IS is on the rise in Afghanistan. But if Pakistan would help us, we could get Taliban to the table and end the war in Afghanistan. Our presence then would be focused on counterterrorism, ISIS," Graham told the CNN on Sunday.

"If we can go to Pakistan and put a free trade agreement on the table to get the Pakistanis to push the Taliban to the peace table, and you can end the Afghan war," he added.

The South Carolina Senator has been praising Trump's foreign policy said that he was generally "very pleased" with the US President's decisions on the foreign policy and national security front.

"He pulled out of the Iranian agreement, which was a nightmare. He's increased military spending to a level that I could not be more pleased with. He changed the rules of engagement in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, so IS is just about destroyed," he said.

"I'm generally pleased. But the Syrian decision caught me by surprise. I fear it's going to undercut all we have achieved. I will ask the president to reconsider. I think he's going to sit down with his generals and make an informed, well-thought-out decision," Graham added.

"All I ask him to do is make sure we don't fumble the ball inside the 10-yard line. Sit down with your generals. Make sure we get Syria right," he said.

The Senator said Trump has destroyed IS virtually on his watch and put Iran on the run.

"He has rebuilt our military from a foreign policy point of view, and we now talk to North Korea from a position of strength," he added.

"That's all you can ask any president to do. Obama knew better than anybody. General Obama was a disaster. He never reconsidered any decision. I hope President Trump will. And I believe he will," he said in response to a question.

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