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Peace In Afghanistan, Imperative For Stability In Pakistan & Region; FM

ISTANBUL – Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday said that peace in Afghanistan is imperative for stability in Pakistan and the region.

Speaking at trilateral conference of Afghanistan, Turkey, and for peace in Afghanistan in Istanbul today (Friday), he said that Pakistan has been continuing its sincere reconciliatory efforts for peace in Afghanistan. He said all stakeholders to the Afghan problem will have to play their constructive role to materialize the dream of a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan.

The foreign minister emphasized the need for formulating a comprehensive and implementable plan regarding a time-bound and dignified repatriation of Afghan refugees.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi describing Pakistan-Afghanistan-Turkey trilateral meeting as “useful” said a negotiated political solution of the Afghan issue was the only forward.

“It is a unique opportunity for Afghans to show farsightedness. If they suffer, everybody will suffer. It is important that Afghans sit together and find a way forward,” he said while addressing a joint press conference along with his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavusoglu here after the trilateral meeting hosted by Turkey.

The Foreign Minister said as there was no military solution of the Afghan conflict, Pakistan had urged and would continue to urge all the Afghan parties to sit together and find a way forward. “We as brothers can only facilitate,” he remarked. He said that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan was in the interest of Pakistan, which had suffered the most due to war in Afghanistan than any other country in the world.

The Foreign Minister said that during the trilateral meeting, they discussed various issues relating to Afghanistan including economic, security, migration, refugees etc. “Illegal migration is an issue which needs to be tackled,” he said and adding he also discussed this issue during his visit to Tehran.

During the trilateral meeting,  the Foreign Ministers of Pakistan, Turkey and Afghanistanl discussed the latest developments in Afghan peace process, exchanged views on achieving the shared objectives of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned political process.

Foreign Minister Qureshi highlighted Pakistan’s valuable efforts towards this end. Afghan Foreign Minister Hanif Atmar participated in the conference via video link. During the conference, views were also exchanged on promoting economic cooperation, enhancing interactions, challenges to regional peace, and dignified repatriation of Afghan refugees.

It may be added that trilateral process comprising Pakistan, Turkey, and Afghanistan has been in place since 2007. Later, addressing the joint press briefing after conclusion of trilateral conference, along with his Turkish counterpart in Istanbul today (Friday) while his Afghan counterpart joined through video link, Shah Mahmood Qureshi reiterated Pakistan s commitment to continue its sincere, conciliatory efforts for peace in Afghanistan.

The FM said peace in Afghanistan will open up new avenues for the development of ties within and outside the region. He stressed that at this crucial stage all parties concerned should cease this great opportunity and sit on the table for this purpose. 

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