US yields to new terms of engagement Statement by Secretary Clinton on her Call With Pakistani Foreign Minister Khar Press Statement Hillary Rodham Clinton Secretary of State Washington, DC July 3, 2012 This morning, I spoke by telephone with Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar. I once again reiterated our deepest regrets for the tragic incident in Salala last November. I offered our sincere condolences to the families of the Pakistani soldiers who lost their lives. Foreign Minister Khar and I acknowledged the mistakes that resulted in the loss of Pakistani military lives. We are sorry for the losses suffered by the Pakistani military. We are committed to working closely with Pakistan and Afghanistan to prevent this from ever happening again. As I told the former Prime Minister of Pakistan days after the Salala incident, America respects Pakistanâ€™s sovereignty and is committed to working together in pursuit of shared objectives on the basis of mutual interests and mutual respect. In todayâ€™s phone call, Foreign Minister Khar and I talked about the importance of taking coordinated action against terrorists who threaten Pakistan, the United States, and the region; of supporting Afghanistanâ€™s security, stability, and efforts towards reconciliation; and of continuing to work together to advance the many other shared interests we have, from increasing trade and investment to strengthening our people-to-people ties. Our countries should have a relationship that is enduring, strategic, and carefully defined, and that enhances the security and prosperity of both our nations and the region. The Foreign Minister and I were reminded that our troops â€“ Pakistani and American â€“ are in a fight against a common enemy. We are both sorry for losses suffered by both our countries in this fight against terrorists. We have enhanced our counter-terrorism cooperation against terrorists that threaten Pakistan and the United States, with the goal of defeating Al-Qaida in the region. In addition, I am pleased that Foreign Minister Khar has informed me that the ground supply lines (GLOC) into Afghanistan are opening. Pakistan will continue not to charge any transit fee in the larger interest of peace and security in Afghanistan and the region. This is a tangible demonstration of Pakistanâ€™s support for a secure, peaceful, and prosperous Afghanistan and our shared objectives in the region. This will also help the United States and ISAF conduct the planned drawdown at a much lower cost. This is critically important to the men and women who are fighting terrorism and extremism in Afghanistan. Foreign Minister Khar has informed me that, consistent with current practice, no lethal equipment will transit the GLOC into Afghanistan except for equipping the ANSF. In concluding the call, I reiterated our deep appreciation to the Government and the people of Pakistan for their many sacrifices and their critical contribution to the ongoing fight against terrorism and extremism. Najam Sethi's take: US yields to new terms of engagement USA begs for forgiveness ISLAMABAD: The United States has accepted the new terms of engagement with Pakistan covering all aspects of bilateral ties between the two countries as enumerated by Islamabad, possibly bringing to an end the acrimonious relationship between the two countries created in the wake of the Salala attack last November. Pakistan accepted the set of proposals handed to it by the high-powered US mission during the two-day talks that ended here on Monday evening. The draft of the understanding will come up for formal approval in the meeting of the Defence Committee of the Cabinet (DCC) that is scheduled for today (Tuesday) with Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in the chair, following which the federal cabinet will endorse the decisions of the DCC tomorrow (Wednesday). US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will call her counterpart in Islamabad Hina Rabbani Khar and will convey the apology for the Salala incident after which the remaining issues will be settled one after the other as the ground lines of communication (G-LOC) are reopened. The route will be strictly used only for non-lethal goods for the troops combating in Afghanistan. The passage fee per container would be charged according to its size and the stuff carried would be subject to scrutiny as no weapon or ammunition would be allowed to be transported. The US has assured Pakistan that it would respect Pakistanâ€™s sovereignty and intelligence sharing will guide the use of drones in difficult terrain of the tribal areas. Federal Minister for Finance Senator Hafeez Shaikh told The News late Monday evening that once the United States had agreed to almost all the conditions set by Pakistan, one should not think in acrimonious terms. Khar, who also looked jubilant about the developments, said â€œWe are close to a new beginning.â€ In the meantime, highly-placed diplomatic sources told The News that Washington had assured Islamabad that it would release half of the payment equaling $400 million under the Coalition Support Fund (CSF) next week while the rest would be released within this year. The United States had pledged that it would pay Pakistan $800 million in the year 2011 for providing assistance in the â€˜war on terrorâ€™ but tension in ties came in the way of payment according to the stipulated time. The US is bound to pay Pakistan an amount of 2.5 billion US dollars. The United States will also discuss at the appropriate level the realisation of funds under the Kerry-Lugar law which will help improve the balance of payment and allow the government to fulfill the fiscal commitment it had made in the budget for the next year with its people. With this, the military cooperation between the two defence establishments would also be restored to the normal scale, sources maintained. The sources said that Finance Minister Senator Hafeez Shaikh, who led Pakistan in talks with visiting US Undersecretary of State Thomas Nydes, has reported to Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf about the outcome of the negotiations on Monday evening. Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar was also present. Pakistanâ€™s Ambassador in the United States Sherry Rehman has arrived here in the wee hours of Tuesday. She will also attend the DCC on special invitation.