Pakistan Desires Peaceful, Stable Afghanistan: FM


Pakistan desires peaceful, stable Afghanistan: FM

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 21st Jun, 2021 ) :Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi Monday reiterated that Pakistan wanted peace and stability in Afghanistan and it had always played its role at different world fora for peace, reconciliation and politically negotiated settlement of the issue.

Talking to the media during his visit to National Institute of Health (NIH), the foreign minister referred to his recent visit of Turkey and said about 44 foreign ministers and heads of governments from different countries had acknowledged the role Pakistan played for the peaceful resolution of the Afghan issue.

He said Afghans had to take the decision about their future, Pakistan desired lasting peace in Afghanistan as an immediate neighbour its interests were linked with that country. With peace and stability, the shared objectives of connectivity and economic cooperation could be met, he added.

He observed that it was a test for the Afghan leadership and they had to take the decision, adding an Afghan faction was busy to run away from its failures in Afghanistan.

The foreign minister said he also held meetings with his Afghan counterpart and Chairman Afghan Reconciliation Council Dr Abdullah Abdullah and exchanged views on the Afghan peace process.

During conversation, the foreign minister said the Afghan side had shared its concerns over recent developments, cautioning if Afghanistan reeled back into 90s, it would definitely mount pressure on Pakistan, and might once again, increase influx of Afghan refugees.

The foreign minister said Pakistan was a shared partner in the peace process and he had told his Afghan counterpart that trust was must in that regard.

Sharing his concerns, he said Afghanistan looked like a divided house. By harping on the old tunes, the United States would do no good for the region, he observed.

In Antalya Diplomatic Forum, he said, the foreign ministers of different countries also emphasized upon political settlement resolution of the issue.

Qureshi further said the foreign forces were pulling out of Afghanistan, about 60 per cent troops' drawdawn had completed and still continued.

He said the US wanted to rid Afghanistan of the international terrorist network and they thought that they had achieved their objective. The US had trained the Afghan army and helped establish their infrastructure, but now the Afghan government was admitting that they could not defend itself, he said expressing his wonder.

In the US-Taliban agreement, it was agreed upon that the Afghan soil would not be used against any country which was a development, he added.

Qureshi said Pakistan had given huge sacrifices in the war against terrorism in terms of human and financial losses.

He said he had responded to the comments of Afghan national security advisor as a Pakistani, and the whole nation had also trashed his baseless accusations, even Afghans had also disagreed with his statement terming it unsuitable.

About Indian Prime Minister Modi's call for a moot on the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) on June 24 , the foreign minister termed it an unusual development. It was an admission of New Delhi that nothing was right in the IIOJK.

He said Kashmiris had unanimously rejected India's steps of August 5, 2019, even Mehbooba Mufti and Farooq Abdullah, who had shared power with the Indian government, did not accept those steps.

The foreign minister, on the occasion, lauded the Covid vaccination arrangements for the diplomatic corps at the NIH.

Earlier, while addressing the diplomatic corps at NIH, the foreign minister said Pakistan faced the coronavirus pandemic and had been successful in its efforts to contain its spread.

The whole world acknowledged Prime Minister Imran Khan's smart lockdown policy, which on one hand, saved the people's lives and on the other, helped in continuation of their livelihood, a press release in urdu language quoted him as saying.

Expressing his satisfaction, he said the vaccination drive in the country continued successfully.

The foreign minister lauded all the stakeholders, especially the Ministry of Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, NIH, and the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) for their relentless efforts during the pandemic.

He also appreciated the preparation process of Pak-Vac by the NIH experts, who manifested their professionalism and dedication. He also referred to indigenous manufacturing of ventilators.

Qureshi expressed gratitude to the World Health Organization (WHO) and China for their support and help in securing vaccines.

He also commended the health workers, doctors and paramedical staff, who braced the coronavirus waves with their professional dedication and sacrifices.

Speaking on the occasion, NIH Executive Director Prof Dr Maj Gen Aamer Ikram lauded the lead role played by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Pakistan's COVID response, starting from the largest repatriation operation in the country's history that brought back stranded Pakistanis from more than 70 countries around the world, last year.

While appreciating Pakistan's effective COVID response, the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, speaking on behalf of the diplomatic community, conveyed great appreciation for the assistance provided by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the diplomatic missions during the ongoing pandemic.

The event was attended by the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, ambassadors, senior officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NIH officials and media personnel.