China begins push for Pak-Afghan detente

Published June 25, 2017
ISLAMABAD: Adviser to the PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and members of their teams pictured during a meeting on Saturday.—APP
ISLAMABAD: Adviser to the PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and members of their teams pictured during a meeting on Saturday.—APP

ISLAMABAD: China on Saturday began its efforts to normalise relations bet­ween Pakistan and Afgha­nistan and encourage cooperation between the two countries for a political settlement of the Afghan conflict.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi reached Islamabad in the evening after visiting Kabul during the day where he held talks with Afghan Foreign Minister Salahud­din Rabbani and National Security Adviser Haneef Atmar.

The Chinese minister, who was received at the airport by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, started his visit with talks at the Foreign Office with Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz.

According to sources, the discussions centred around the situation in Afghanistan and the relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan that have been on a steep downslide due to differences over the strategy to fight terrorism.

China, the sources said, was proposing a trilateral mechanism for cooperation for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan and coordination of counterterrorism actions between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

An announcement in this regard is expected on Sunday.

Mr Wang’s visit is a follow-up to the discussions the Chinese leadership had with Pakistani and Afghan leaders on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit earlier this month on counterterrorism cooperation and revival of the Afghan peace process.

The Chinese minister will also meet Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Bajwa.

China has lately got increasingly involved in Afghanistan. Besides its bilateral engagement with both Islamabad and Kabul, it is part of a number of international processes on Afghanistan.

Beijing’s interest in Afghanistan is out of its security concerns related to presence of Uighur militants in Badakhshan province. Moreover, China’s regional engagement is driven by its economic investment in Afghanistan and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

For Beijing, peace and stability in Afghanistan is critical for both its own security and investments in Pakistan.

Published in Dawn, June 25th, 2017

Opinion

Awaiting orders
25 Oct 2021

Awaiting orders

Orders are given for demolition. Some structures go down. Some still stand.
Is it our own?
25 Oct 2021

Is it our own?

It is fair to ask what truly determines our success.
Up, up and away
Updated 25 Oct 2021

Up, up and away

Irate Twitterati want Superman to stop meddling.
No-trust resolution dynamics
Updated 24 Oct 2021

No-trust resolution dynamics

It is heartening that the effort to remove a chief minister is following constitutional norms.

Editorial

25 Oct 2021

Party to a vile campaign

THE PTI government’s hostility towards the media and its intolerance for dissent is well known. The target of ...
Financial crisis
Updated 25 Oct 2021

Financial crisis

DESPITE having progressed to ‘very good step’ and being ‘close to concluding the agreement’ a few days back,...
25 Oct 2021

Morals and Pemra

TIME and again, Pemra has come under fire for issuing arbitrary instructions to TV channels on matters ranging from...
Anti-government rallies
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Anti-government rallies

Banning a party because it can create a public nuisance sets a dangerous precedent which can be repeated to justify future bans.
24 Oct 2021

End of polio?

AFTER a long struggle, the reward is finally in sight. With only a single case of wild poliovirus reported this year...
24 Oct 2021

Heritage work

IT is encouraging that, slowly, projects of heritage conservation and preservation appear to be taking off. These...