High-level talks between Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States set for this month have been postponed amid a growing crisis sparked by the arrest of an American accused of murder, the US Department of State said Saturday.
The trilateral annual talks, in which ministers and other top officials outline progress on issues such as the war in Afghanistan and the campaign against extremism, had been scheduled for February 23-24 in Washington.
Their postponement -- with no new date announced -- marked the latest blow to the strained US ties with Pakistan, where police on Friday rejected the American s self-defense claim and accused him of cold-blooded murder as the local court extended his remand.
State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said in a statement that in light of the political changes in Pakistan and after discussions with Afghan and Pakistani officials in Washington, it was agreed to postpone the Trilateral Meeting.
"We look forward to convening a very productive Trilateral Meeting at the earliest opportunity," Philip Crowley said, adding that Washington remains "committed to robust engagement between Afghanistan, Pakistan and the United States, as we share many issues of mutual concern and benefit from being at the same table."