Pakistani prime minister in Afghanistan to ease tensions

Lucy Bush
April 7, 2018

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi will embark on a landmark visit to Kabul on Friday on the invitation of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Pakistan's Foreign Office said.

Abbasi also met with other senior Afghan political leaders including Gulbadin Hekmatyar, Mohammad Mohaqiq, Mohammad Karim Khalili, and Sayed Hamed Gailani, to convey the support of the government and people of Pakistan to all ethnic groups in Afghanistan and to underscore Pakistan's commitment to peace and stability in Afghanistan, Pakistan's statement read.

Prior to that, Pakistan's National Security Adviser Lt Gen (retd) Nasser Janjua also held separate meetings with President Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah during his visit to Kabul. In this regard, the Prime Minister would discuss with the Afghan leadership ways to facilitate travel between the two countries, assist education and medical treatment of Afghan nationals in Pakistan and expand trade and transit facilitation between the two countries.

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The visit, aimed at reducing tensions between the two neighbouring countries and further strengthening the Afghan peace process, comes in the backdrop of allegations by authorities in Afghanistan. They also discussed refugee and repatriations issues, the exchange of prisoners and finalization of the Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for peace and solidarity.

Later, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Afghan President Muhammad Ashraf Ghani offered Jumma prayers at Arg mosque.

Ghani called stability the key to regional peace, saying decisions by leaders of the two countries could guarantee the security and prosperity of their coming generations.

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The two leaders reaffirmed their commitment to regional connectivity as they had done in Herat on 23rd February 2018 while jointly inaugurating the entry of TAPI Gas Pipeline from Turkmenistan into Afghanistan.

Pakistan has been under pressure from Kabul and Washington to stop offering safe havens to militants blamed for attacks in Afghanistan, a charge Islamabad denies. In the latest military actions, Pakistan told the Afghan about them and stressed that these operations were on Pakistani side of the border, it said.

During his meeting with Ghani, the Afghan president invited PM Abbasi to "initiate a state-to-state comprehensive dialogue".

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Other reports by Info About Network

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