US Downplays Reports of Civil Nuclear Deal With Pakistan

US Downplays Reports of Civil Nuclear Deal With Pakistan

File Photo: Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif with US President Barack Obama in Washington. (AFP Photo)

Washington: The United States has downplayed reports of a civil nuclear deal with Pakistan, similar to the Indo-US atomic agreement, during Pak Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's visit to Washington, saying a "breakthrough" in this regard was not expected.

"About the sort of reports that the United States and Pakistan were planning a (civil nuclear deal) -- or published reports indicated that there may be a breakthrough in this regard, and I would significantly reduce your expectations about that occurring on Thursday," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference.

Mr Earnest said President Barack Obama is looking forward to welcoming Mr Sharif to the White House later this week.

"There are a range of issues that are important for us to discuss, including the announcement that the President made last week about our strategy in Afghanistan moving forward," he said.

"We certainly have an important security relationship, and the security cooperation between our two countries is beneficial to the safety and security of the citizens in both our countries, and I'm confident that will be the focal point of discussions," Mr Earnest said.