Afghan national security advisor arrives in Pakistan

Updated June 26, 2014


fghanistan's national security adviser Dr Rangin Dadfar Spanta. — File photo
fghanistan's national security adviser Dr Rangin Dadfar Spanta. — File photo

**ISLAMABAD: Afghanistan's national security adviser Dr Rangin Dadfar Spanta arrived in Islamabad on Thursday and held meetings with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif and Adviser to Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz.

During the meeting Pakistan and Afghanistan have agreed to establish a Joint Working Group on Security, co-chaired by the Foreign Secretary/Deputy Foreign Minister and also comprising representatives of relevant security institutions.

The agreement was reached during talks between the visiting Afghan National Security Advisor and his Pakistani counterpart Sartaj Aziz in Islamabad.

Both Islamabad and Kabul also agreed to hold a meeting of their relevant officials on joint security group in Islamabad on Thursday, 3 July 2014, to enhance their security coordination, according to a joint statement issued after the talks.

The former foreign minister also met Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at the Prime Minister House to ensure deeper bilateral security cooperation between the two countries.

A press release from the PM house said the meeting was attended by Afghan delegation comprising Ambassador of Afghanistan to Pakistan Janan Mosazai, Deputy Foreign Secretary Afghanistan Atiqullah Hatifmal, Deputy Assistant Ministry of Defence Major General Asadullah Akramyar and Director International Affairs Hakimullah Hakmatullah Foushanji.

The Pakistani side included Advisor to PM Sartaj Aziz, Special Assistant to PM Tariq Fatimi and Secretary Foreign Affairs Aizaz Chaudhry.

The statement added that Dr. Spanta had delivered Afghan President Karzai’s letter to Premier Sharif during the talks.

The main focus of the talks was on strengthening bilateral security cooperation.

"Both sides agreed on the need to take action against all terrorists without making any distinction among them and their hideouts on their respective sides", the statement said.

The two sides agreed that terrorism was a common enemy and emphasised closer cooperation and coordination at institutional level to deal with this common menace.

Dr. Rangin Dadfar Spanta, National Security Adviser of Afghanistan, was accompanied by senior officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defence, National Directorate of Security (NDS), and Afghan National Security Council.

Before departure Dr. Rangin Dadfar Spanta, National Security Adviser of Afghanistan also held meeting with army Chief General Raheel Sharif at GHQ.

Spanta is one of the most influential people in the Afghan government and had served as the country's foreign minister prior to becoming the national security advisor to President Hamid Karzai.

His visit came as Pakistan is engaged in a comprehensive operation against foreign and local terrorists who were hiding in sanctuaries in North Waziristan tribal region, a week after the brazen insurgent attack on the country's busiest airport in Karachi.

Pakistan had requested Afghanistan for support during the operation and asked the country not to shelter militants fleeing the region.

Subsequently Afghan President Hamid Karzai telephoned Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday and vowed to enhance security cooperation between the two countries.

Also Pakistan's Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam had confirmed at a weekly briefing that Afghanistan had assured its full support to Operation Zarb-i-Azb.