ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has reiterated Pakistan’s support for a peaceful, united and stable Afghanistan during a telephonic conversation with his Afghan counterpart on Wednesday.
During the conversation, Qureshi and Afghan Foreign Minister Hanif Atmar exchanged their views on matters relating to Afghan peace process, bilateral relations, repatriation of Afghan refugees and regional connectivity.
Qureshi highlighted the country’s positive contribution towards the Afghan peace process and expressed hope that the Afghan leadership would seize this historic opportunity through Intra-Afghan negotiations to establish lasting peace in Afghanistan by achieving an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement.
The FM underlined the need for guarding against the role of ‘spoilers’ who did not wish to see the return of peace and stability in Afghanistan. He reiterated that Pakistan will respect the decisions taken by the Afghan government about their future through an Afghan-led and Afghan owned peace process.
Moreover, the foreign minister also welcomed the increasing high-level bilateral visits that include the recent visit of the Afghan Wolesi Jigra Speaker Mir Rahman Rahmani to the Pakistan- Afghanistan trade Investment Forum in Islamabad.
Qureshi further emphasised on deepening the trade and economic ties between the two countries and to make efforts to enhance connectivity.
The FM reiterated the importance of a time-bound and well-resourced road map for the repatriation of Afghan refugees. He also emphasised on Pakistan’s commitment to a safe and dignified return of Afghan refugees to their homeland.
The FM mentioned the steps taken by Pakistan to facilitate Afghans. He highlighted the new visa policy that aims to further ease people-to-people contact between the two nations
Furthermore, Qureshi commiserated over the loss of lives in the unfortunate incident in Jalalabad where Afghan local authorities were managing visa applicants. At least 15 Afghans were killed and more than a dozen were injured in a stampede that occurred in an open ground where thousands of Afghans had gathered, on October 21, to secure visas from the Pakistan consulate in eastern Afghanistan.