Pak commitment to Afghan peace


CHIEF of Army Staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir has stressed the need for enhanced cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan to effectively tackle the common challenges of terrorism and extremism. During a meeting with Afghanistan’s Acting Minister for Foreign Affairs Amir Khan Muttaqi, he reaffirmed Pakistan’s commitment to a stable, peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan. The COAS and Afghan acting FM discussed issues of mutual interest, including aspects related to regional security, border management and formalisation of bilateral security mechanisms for improvement in the current security environment.

Pakistan has an unblemished record as far as its desire for a peaceful and stable Afghanistan is concerned and the country always tried to help realize this cherished objective through bilateral engagements with Afghanistan as well as international moves and initiatives for the same cause. This commitment was also reflected in Pakistan’s participation in the UN-sponsored dialogue on Afghanistan held recently in Doha followed by the 5th China-Pakistan-Afghanistan Trilateral Foreign Ministers Dialogue in Islamabad where the three sides agreed to advance political engagement, counterterrorism cooperation and enhance trade, investment and connectivity under the trilateral framework. Most importantly, Pakistan throughout opposed the military solution of the Afghan conflict and advocated the cause of peaceful settlement of the conflict that ultimately paved the way for Doha accord leading to departure of foreign troops from the Afghan soil and consequential establishment of the Taliban Government. As the new Government in Kabul faced international isolation compounding the economic and other woes of the Afghan people, Pakistan has also been urging the international community to review its approach towards Afghanistan, engage into a process of dialogue with the Taliban and move towards recognition of their Government. Pakistan has also adequately addressed concerns of Afghanistan vis-à-vis cross border movements as it invested heavily on the border management mechanism. However, it is regrettable that the Taliban Government is not showing any urgency to address Pakistan’s serious concern over anti-Pakistan activities of the disbanded TTP that operates from Afghan soil. This has become the main source of friction between the two countries and the situation is unlikely to change until and unless Kabul demonstrates sincerity in taking effective measures to address this concern of Pakistan.