WASHINGTON  -The United States Wednesday distanced itself from former President Pervez Musharraf, an close ally in war on terrorism, who faces a string of charges ranging from treason to conspiracy to kill Benazir Bhutto, the two-time former prime minister. 

Asked whether  the U.S. had any comments regarding the cases against Musharraf, a State Department spokesperson referred reporters at the daily press briefing to Pakistani officials. “On the issue of Mr. Musharraf, I --- really refer you to Pakistan for more information. I don’t have a position one way or another,” spokesperson Patrick Ventrell said.

To another question,  he said Secretary of State John Kerry looks forward to visiting Pakistan and "very much wants to go there and spend enough time, have appropriate window of time to spend in Pakistan" for wide-ranging engagement in the country. He also cited US Special Representative James Dobbins' just concluded visit to Islamabad as part of ongoing contacts on bilateral relations.

The spokesperson did not directly address the issue of U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan, but said the two countries have broad counterterrorism cooperation and continue to have conversation on that.

On Tuesday,  when asked to explain Secretary of State John Kerry’s comments during his visit to New Delhi on Indian role in Afghanistan, the spokesperson said the U.S. wants India to improve its relations with Pakistan while having good economic cooperation with Afghanistan. “Well, the Secretary thinks, and what we think more broadly in the U.S. Government, is that certainly, especially with economic cooperation with Afghanistan – India inside of Afghanistan, that it’s been very positive,” Ventrell said.

Continuing, he underlined the importance of regional stability. “We’re certainly welcoming there and want there to be greater regional stability, for India to have a better relationship with Pakistan, for India to have a good relationship with Afghanistan. So we welcome all that.”

While in New Delhi, as part of his ongoing Asia trip, Secretary Kerry called for a new era in India-Pakistan relations as he acknowledged Islamabad

“I know there’s a lot of history to the relationship between India and Pakistan, so I’m not naive about some of the difficulties.  Particularly after talking to the leaders of both nations, however, I believe that a new dynamic is beginning to emerge, and that it can develop further,” he said over the weekend.

The U.S. Secretary of State’s acknowledgement of difficulties referred to the friction-filled South Asian past due to a number of longstanding issues between Pakistan and India including the core Jammu and Kashmir dispute.  Kerry also noted in remarks on U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue that “Prime Minister (Nawaz) Sharif has stated clearly that his chief goal is his country’s economic revival.”

“And that is a goal that India and the United States share.  The fact is that in this age of globalization, of expanded connectivity all across the world, there you have – we’ve created a broad-based realization that both countries, India and Pakistan, can gain substantially from expanding economic ties and breaking down the old barriers, and changing history.  All in all, this presents a tremendous opportunity for progress.  It could be a beginning of a new era for India-Pakistan relations that could be built on mutually beneficial trade, and out of that, hopefully, could come a level of trust.”