Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that peace and political stability in Afghanistan cannot be imposed from the outside through the use of force.
In an article published in the leading US daily Washington Post, he said that only an Afghan-owned and Afghan-led reconciliation process, which recognises Afghanistan’s political realities and diversity, can produce lasting peace.
Khan said that negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban in Doha for political settlement will bring an end to decade’s old war.
The prime minister said that through decades of conflict, Pakistan has dealt with the responsibility of taking care of more than 4mn Afghan refugees.
He said when US President Donald Trump wrote to him in late 2018 for Pakistan’s assistance to achieve a negotiated political settlement in Afghanistan, he did not hesitate to give assurances that Pakistan would take every effort to facilitate such an outcome.
The prime minister said that the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban responded to the Afghan people’s yearning for peace.
Khan said that a hasty international withdrawal from Afghanistan would be unwise.
The prime minister added that Pakistan needs to be on guard against regional spoilers who are not invested in peace and stability in Afghanistan.
He said that Pakistan will continue to support the Afghan people in their quest for a unified, independent and sovereign Afghanistan that is at peace with itself and its neighbours.
Meanwhile, National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser has stressed the need for increasing trade and culture relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
In an interview, he said that Pakistan and Afghanistan are brotherly neighbouring countries and that trade with Afghanistan has significant role for Pakistan’s national economy.
The Speaker said both countries should work to enhance government-to-government and people-to-people contacts.
Replying to a question, Qaiser said that Pakistan will warmly welcome Afghan leader Abdullah Abdullah, who is heading Afghanistan delegation for peace process.
To another question, he said that Pakistan has always rendered sacrifices for Afghan refugees, serving them from many years with open hearts.
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