NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen urged Pakistan Wednesday to cooperate with military operations in neighboring Afghanistan despite a cross-border NATO strike last month that killed 24 Pakistani troops.
The attack sparked fury in Pakistan, which blocked ground supply routes for NATO forces in Afghanistan and pulled out of Monday's international conference on Afghanistan in Germany.
The only way forward is positive cooperation between Afghanistan and Pakistan, between the United States and Pakistan, between NATO and Pakistan, said Rasmussen, repeating his regret for the November 26 incident.
I fully agree that at the end of the day we need a positive engagement of Pakistan if we are to ensure long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan, Rasmussen told reporters as he arrived for talks with NATO foreign ministers in Brussels.
I hope to see progress in our relationship. We have offered a political framework for cooperation between NATO and Pakistan, he added.
It is still unclear what happened in the attack. U.S. officials have said that Pakistani officials had cleared the NATO air strike, unaware they had troops in the area. However a Pakistani official has denied this.
(Reporting By Sebastian Moffett; editing by Mark John)