PM urges Afghanistan to pursue peace with Taliban at the earliest

Updated 04 Aug 2020

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Afghan President Ashraf Ghani calls PM Imran Khan, conveys Eid greetings. — INP/File
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani calls PM Imran Khan, conveys Eid greetings. — INP/File

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday urged the Afghan government to steadfastly pursue peace with Taliban despite the challenges.

The Prime Minister Office in a statement on Mr Khan’s telephone conversation with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said: “The prime minister expressed the hope that the current momentum would be further built to implement the US-Taliban peace agreement in its entirety leading to Intra-Afghan negotiations at the earliest.”

Mr Ghani had called Mr Khan to greet him on Eidul Azha.

Taliban observed a three-day ceasefire on the occasion of Eid. However, the calm was broken by the attack on Jalalabad prison, which has been claimed by Daesh. Twenty-nine people were killed in the attack.

Ghani calls Imran, conveys Eid greetings

Taliban say they were not involved in the attack.

Both the Afghan government and Taliban appear set for the commencement of their long-delayed peace talks after Eid.

The PM Office said: “The two leaders also discussed the latest stage in the Afghan peace process. Prime Minister Imran Khan highlighted Pakistan’s positive contribution to the peace process, strongly stressing that peace in Afghanistan is of paramount importance.”

The conversation was also important because it came three days after a deadly border clash between the forces of the two countries in Chaman/Spin Boldak border crossing.

Discussing the bilateral issues, Mr Khan referred to various institutional mechanisms between the two countries. He highlighted the importance of working together to further strengthen bilateral relations and said Pakistan looked forward to the next session of Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity at the earliest.

Published in Dawn, August 4th, 2020