Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan spoke with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on the phone on Friday and discussed the Afghan peace process and ways to bolster bilateral engagement.
The premier reaffirmed “Pakistan’s steadfast support to the Afghan peace process” and noted the “positive results of these efforts culminating in the U.S.-Taliban peace agreement and the commencement of intra-Afghan negotiations”.
- From the Editors: UAE enters prestigious list of spacefaring nations with NASA agreement
- Photos: Former shipping container maker uses them to farm
- Crowds in face masks pack out China auto show after COVID-19 delay
- Sushant Singh Rajput probe: Sara Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, Shraddha Kapoor arrive at NCB for questioning
Khan underlined the importance Pakistan attaches to constructive engagement with Afghanistan and to peace, stability and prosperity of the Afghan people. Pakistani premier also thanked Ghani for the invitation extended to him to visit Afghanistan and said that he will undertake the visit at the earliest opportunity.
Khan underlined the importance of all Afghan parties working together for a reduction in the violence leading to ceasefire He also appreciated the steps taken by relevant sides to facilitate the peace talks in Doha.
Afghan chief negotiator to visit Islamabad
The talks between the two leaders took place ahead of the visit of Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, the chairman of the Afghan High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR). Kabul’s chief negotiator is scheduled to arrive in Islamabad on Monday on the invitation of the Pakistani premier. Dr Abdullah is expected to discuss peace efforts to end the decades-old war in Afghanistan and ways to improve bilateral relations. This will be the first high-level visit from Afghanistan in months, signaling warmer ties.
Contribution in peace talks
During his United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) address, Khan said that “Pakistan is deeply gratified that it has fulfilled its part of the responsibility” by facilitating the talks that culminated in the US-Taliban peace agreement 2020. He urged all Afghan stakeholders “must seize this historic opportunity and work together to secure an inclusive and comprehensive political agreement through the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process.”
Pakistan an essential regional partner
Recently, the U.S. Ambassador-designate to Pakistan William E. Todd in the U.S. Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee said Pakistan was United State’s “essential regional partner” and had played “a critical role” in the historic start of Afghan peace negotiations. Pakistan and the United States, he said, share a common interest in a durable peace in Afghanistan. Pakistan now has an “even more important role to play in supporting efforts toward a negotiated political settlement that ends 40 years of war.”