Islamabad: After its exit from Afghanistan, the United States has once again accorded Pakistan the role of a key player in US military plans, especially due to its strategic presence in a region that connects West, South, and Central Asia, media reports said.

On Wednesday, in high-level meetings between Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, with US President Joe Biden's administration officials from the State Department and Pentagon US accorded the role of conduit to Pakistan, reported Islam Khabar.

However, there was no agreement that ensued following the meeting. It is pertinent to note that despite the fact that who is in power the US has enjoyed close ties with Pakistan's military.

This key development comes in the backdrop of Bajwa retiring next month. Bajwa will complete an extended tenure as the tenth Chief that began on November 29, 2016.

Bajwa's visit comes after Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari held consultations with his US counterparts and officials. The US-Pakistan relations took a sour turn after then-Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan blamed the US for conspiring to oust him from power, reported Islam Khabar.

After Khan's ouster, US-Pakistan relations consolidated. Bajwa had earlier said that Pakistan is improving ties with neighbours and forging economic relationships including trade.

The US cannot afford to move away from Pakistan and is in fact returning to its old logistic base in the region. On the other hand, the Taliban has alleged that the US was giving 'billions' to Pakistan so that it could use logistics support to operate drones.

According to Islam Khabar, the US needs to be around to combat the growth of Al Qaida and the Islamic State in the region. A report by the Pakistan Study Group, an American think tank under the Centre for Global Development, noted that the US could not "walk away" from Pakistan, post its exit from Afghanistan last year.

The study group, which did not involve the US government, included scholars and former US ambassadors to Pakistan Ryan Crocker, Cameron Munter and Robin Raphel, an old Pakistan hand since the 1980s, along with Husain Haqqani, Pakistan's former ambassador in Washington.

The report said that even if the Taliban retorts the US for engagements with Pakistan the US needs to keep engaging Pakistan with investment and climate cooperation key to reducing the South Asian nation's growing reliance on China.

The paper presents another context which is the growing relationship Pakistan has with China. The US cannot ignore this partnership. The US wants to contain China's emergence as a key player in the region and hence will have to proceed accordingly.

Another bone of contention for the US is Sino-Pak cooperation under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The US sees Pakistan frequently playing the "China card".