Qureshi, Pompeo stress importance of continuing Afghan peace process: FO

Published April 2, 2019
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo shake hands ahead of a meeting in Islamabad. — FO/File
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo shake hands ahead of a meeting in Islamabad. — FO/File

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, during a telephone conversation on Tuesday, stressed the importance of continuing the Afghan peace process, a Foreign Office press release said.

Both officials hoped that the upcoming visit of US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad would "provide an opportunity to further build on the gains made so far", the statement read.

The foreign minister briefed Pompeo on measures taken by the Pakistan government to implement the National Action Plan (NAP).

The relations between Pakistan and India also came under discussion during the phone call. Qureshi lauded US' role "in diffusing tensions in the region" in the aftermath of the aerial dogfight between India and Pakistan last month.

The foreign minister apprised Pompeo about the de-escalation measures taken by Pakistan, and "urged US to play its role for resumption of dialogue" between the two neighbours.

Relations between India and Pakistan had hit a new low after a suicide attack in occupied Kashmir's Pulwama district killed more than 40 Indian soldiers on Feb 14. New Delhi pinned the blame on Islamabad after Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) — a group that has been proscribed in Pakistan since 2002 — claimed responsibility for the attack.

Qureshi, in the phone call with Pompeo, also insisted that it was important to "enhance interaction" between the top leadership of US and Pakistan.

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