Afghanistan’s economic connectivity and infrastructure development must continue in the larger regional interest.
Pakistan and other regional stakeholders must cooperate with Afghanistan to develop capacity key to economic connectivity and integration. Economic turmoil is a breeding ground for extremism and terrorism.
These remarks were made by the experts/ track 1.5/2 actors key to Pakistan-Afghanistan relationship during a roundtable held by Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS), Islamabad, to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, pitfalls ahead for Afghanistan, insulating Afghanistan from the external geopolitical factors and challenges for Pakistan.
These experts included Members of the National Assembly Nafeesa Khattak, Shandana Gulzar, and Yaqoob Sheikh, former Ambassadors Ayaz Wazir and Asif Durrani, Gen (retd) Asif Durrani, former IG police Dr. Shoaib Suddle, former Minister of State and Chairman BOI Haroon Sharif, and senior anchorperson Rehman Azhar, among others.
The following is a short list of additional recommendations they proposed for the Pakistani government to aptly tackle the Afghanistan situation next door.
Pakistan should be prepared for the challenges of transitionary period, until an inclusive government is formed in Afghanistan.
Pakistan should have a clear refugee policy and devise a plan for humanitarian assistance packages, in case the optimistic scenario does not pan out.
It should also onboard other regional actors while playing its role for political settlement in Afghanistan. In the interest of security relationships and cooperation with Pakistan, the new Afghan government should not let its land to be used for proxy terrorism.