Blinken stresses US engagement with Pakistan on freedom of expression, rule of law

Antony Blinken

WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken stressed consistent engagement with Pakistan as blanket ban on speeches poses threat to freedom of expression. In a letter to US lawmakers, Blinken highlighted consistent talks with all Pakistani stakeholders while emphasizing significant concerns on issues like freedom of expression and political inclusion. Blinken responded as scores of US lawmakers approached the top diplomat to safeguard democracy and protect basic human rights in the South Asian nation. Blinken pointed out the need to maintain cordial relations with Islamabad without stepping back on its stance on human rights and democratic norms. He maintained that the State Department believes that a democratic Pakistan fully respects the rights of its citizens. Washington maintains close communication with the Pakistani government and other stakeholders and strongly supports the ‘upholding of democratic principles and the rule of law for all. Source: The News

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