Oct 3, 2019, 2:44 PM
Journalist ID: 2053
News Code: 83501760
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Pakistan, Afghan Taliban stresses early peace talks resumption

Islamabad, Oct 3, IRNA -- A high-level Afghan Taliban delegation on Thursday met Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs where both sides agreed on the earliest resumption of the Afghan peace process.

Earlier Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan during his New York visit had said he wanted the United States to restart peace talks with the Afghan Taliban.

US President Donald Trump called off his administration's months-long peace negotiations with the Taliban. He declared the dialogue process as "dead" just when the two sides had reached a draft framework agreement to end the 18-year-old Afghan war.

During their meeting with the foreign minister, the delegation of the Taliban Political Commission (TPC) in Doha discussed the regional situation, the Afghan peace process and other issues of mutual interest.

Inter-Services Intelligence Director General Lt Gen Faiz Hameed, Foreign Affairs Secretary Sohail Mahmood and other senior officials were present for the meeting.

According to Pakistan Foreign Ministry statement TPC delegation was led by Mulla Abdul Ghani Baradar and included senior members of the Commission. This is first ever visit of a Taliban delegation to Pakistan since the establishment of the TPC.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi added that Pakistan would continue to support all efforts to achieve permanent peace in Afghanistan which was essential for Pakistan’s own socio-economic development and progress. He added that Pakistan had wholeheartedly supported Afghanistan in its difficult times during the past four decades.

He said that Pakistan has maintained for several years that there is no military solution to the complex situation in Afghanistan.

An inclusive peace and reconciliation process, involving all sections of the Afghan society, was the only, practical way forward.

Foreign Minister further noted that the direct Taliban-US talks since last year, strongly and sincerely supported by Pakistan, had now laid a firm ground for achieving a sustainable peace deal in Afghanistan.

A pacific settlement of the conflict would lead to a significant reduction of violence, end of bloodshed and long-term peace, stability and prosperity for future generations of Afghanistan.

272**2050

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