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FMs of China, Pakistan, Afghanistan meet today

Updated December 15, 2018


Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani (L), Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi (C) and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) will meet in Kabul today. — File photo
Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani (L), Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi (C) and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) will meet in Kabul today. — File photo

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and China are expected to raise with Afghanistan on Saturday the issue of all­eg­ed support of Indian and Afghan intelligence agencies in the attack on the Chinese consulate in Kara­chi, a diplomatic source said.

Foreign ministers of the three countries are meeting in Kabul for the second trilateral ministerial dialogue.

One of the three sessions of the daylong foreign ministers’ dialogue is dedicated to security.

The other two sessions pertain to the political settlement of the Afghan conflict and regional cooperation.

The foreign ministers will also meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

Islamabad and Beijing may raise with Kabul issue of ‘support’ of RAW, NDS in Chinese consulate attack

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi is leading the Pakistani delegation to the meeting. The delegation comprises diplomats and military and security officials.

“Pakistan and China would together take up the alleged role of RAW [India] and NDS [Afghanistan] in the consulate attack,” the diplomatic source told journalists here on the background.

Three terrorists had att­ack­ed the Chinese consulate on Nov 23. Timely res­ponse by security guards and law enforcement agencies foiled the attack. Although the terrorists could not enter the Chinese consulate premises, four people, including two security personnel, lost their lives in the attack claimed by Baloch insurgents.

Prime Minister Imran Khan had hours after the attack told his cabinet: “The terrorists were being fed from outside to destabilise the country. We will go after all of them.”

Beijing, meanwhile, urged the Pakistani government after the attack to “take measures to ensure the safety” of Chinese citizens in Pakistan.

The diplomatic source, however, did not elaborate what evidence of RAW and NDS collaboration in the attack had the intelligence agencies been able to collect.

However, it is important that the Pakistani and Chinese foreign ministers will be together taking up the matter with the Afghan foreign minister.

The three sides had under the trilateral mechanism previously agreed to “strengthen anti-terrorism and security cooperation”. The three countries said they highly valued the trilateral cooperation mechanism and stood ready to strengthen communication, enhance mutual trust and deepen cooperation under its framework.

It should be recalled that the first ministerial meeting held in Beijing in Dece­mber last year had helped Islamabad and Kabul make progress on the establishment of ‘Afghanistan-Pakis­tan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS)’, which then became the new framework for steering the bilateral relations.

The cooperation under APAPPS too has lately slowed down in the aftermath of the Oct 18 Kand­ahar attack that claimed the lives of top Afghan police official Gen Abdul Raziq and a few other key government officials.

Published in Dawn, December 15th, 2018