ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Friday said that Pakistan’s approach for peace in Afghanistan had shaped the international community’s opinion to give a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan a fair chance.
FM Qureshi said this during a panel discussion titled “Update on Afghanistan” during the Munich Security Conference (NSC), on Friday. The panel also included Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov, former US secretary of state John Kerry and Afghan National Security Advisor (NSA) Hamdullah Mohib.
Addressing the MSC, FM Qureshi highlighted Pakistan’s strong support in breaking the political stalemate in Afghanistan. He said that Pakistan had sincerely responded to the US request for facilitating the peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan that led to direct US-Taliban talks in Abu Dhabi and Doha.
“Important breakthroughs have been achieved by the two sides as more progress is expected in the upcoming rounds of negotiations in Doha. Pakistan offered maximum cooperation and facilitation to the US Special Representative on Afghan Peace and Reconciliation, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad in his mission, which has been acknowledged by him and the Trump administration,” he said.
The foreign minister briefed the audience about Prime Minister Imran Khan’s long-standing vision for a peaceful settlement of Afghan conflict as opposed to finding a military solution.
FM Qureshi added that Pakistan’s approach for peace in Afghanistan had shaped the international community’s opinion to give a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan a fair chance, through an inclusive peace and reconciliation process that is fully led and owned by the Afghans themselves.
“Pakistan’s vision is practical and sync with the ground realities of Afghanistan and the region. Pakistan has acted as an honest and reliable bridge between Afghanistan and the international community to share its hard-earned experiences to set the direction right for a peaceful resolution of the four decades old conflict,” he said.
The foreign minister said that Pakistan has been supporting all peace and reconciliation efforts in Afghanistan as part of its shared responsibility with other regional countries and the international community. Pakistan desires to see a genuine and inclusive peace and reconciliation process with full Afghan ownership because such a process would provide the foundation for an intra-Afghan dialogue that would be the key towards resolving sensitive and critical national issues by the Afghans themselves, he added.
FM Qureshi further remarked that no country other than Pakistan would benefit more from peace in Afghanistan, because after Afghanistan no other country has suffered as much as Pakistan. It will, therefore, remain the torch bearer of finding security, stability and economic development and progress of the whole region could be ensured, he concluded.