COAS assures US envoy of support for regional peace

Published December 15, 2020
US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and Commander Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan General Austin Scott Miller meet Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa. — Photo courtesy Radio Pakistan
US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and Commander Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan General Austin Scott Miller meet Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa. — Photo courtesy Radio Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa on Monday said that Pakistan would continue to back efforts for regional peace and stability.

He extended this assurance to United States Special Envoy for Afghan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad who is visiting Pakistan along with Gen Austin Scott Miller, US Commander Resolute Support Mission (RSM) in Afghanistan.

Ambassador Khalilzad’s latest visit is taking place at a time when the Afghan gover­nment and Afghan Taliban’s negotiation teams announ­ced a 20-day break in their dialogue for ‘consultations’ on the agenda items.

The talks are tentatively scheduled to resume from Jan 5, 2021. It is not clear where the next round of talks will be held though the Afghan government has indicated the desire for hosting them inside Afghanistan.

The two sides are currently negotiating the agenda for the intra-Afghan dialogue after reaching an agreement on Dec 2 on the rules and procedures governing the future talks.

The break and the accompanying uncertainty are a cause of worry for the US.

Amb Khalilzad, after his arrival in Islamabad, tweeted: “Tragically, the war continues. The need for a political settlement, reduction in violence, and a ceasefire remain urgent.”

“Given how much is at stake, it is imperative that there is no delays in resumption of talks and they must resume on Jan 5 as agreed,” he said in another tweet.

Pakistan this year not only helped the US and Taliban sign their agreement, but also facilitated the start of intra-Afghan negotiations and more lately the agreement on rules and procedures for the dialogue.

Prime Minister Imran Khan during his last month visit to Kabul had assured the Afghan leadership of his full cooperation for reduction in violence in Afghanistan. He had assured President Ashraf Ghani “we will do whatever is within our reach”.

According to Pakistan military’s media wing, Inter-Services Public Relations, matters of mutual interest including overall regional security situation with particular reference to ongoing Afghan reconciliation process were discussed during the meeting at GHQ between Gen Bajwa and the US delegation.

“COAS appreciated role of RSM for peace and stability in Afghanistan and assured that Pakistan will continue to play its positive role for peace and stability in the region,” the ISPR said.

“Visiting dignitary appreciated Pakistan’s untiring efforts for facilitating the process towards the mutual objective of peace in the region,” it added.

Published in Dawn, December 15th, 2020

Opinion

Populism and Pakistan
14 Jun 2021

Populism and Pakistan

The less discussed point is how the rise of populism and reactionary politics in the region and beyond has actually impacted our
Domestic workers
14 Jun 2021

Domestic workers

A bill to protect domestic workers is awaiting Senate approval.
FATF compliance
13 Jun 2021

FATF compliance

Pakistan has made serious efforts to address the deficiencies in its CFT/AML regime because of FATF pressure.

Editorial

14 Jun 2021

Power shortages

WE have surplus generation capacity and we have frequent electricity shortages — particularly when the demand ...
14 Jun 2021

Suicide in Thar

THARPARKAR is an appropriate case study for examining the factors that lead some people to the desperate, final act...
14 Jun 2021

Water woes

THIS past week saw a discussion on a water management system that, if properly implemented, should go some way...
Covid strategy
Updated 13 Jun 2021

Covid strategy

It is critical for govt to demonstrate to the public how badly health, business and education have suffered during the pandemic.
13 Jun 2021

Women in Balochistan

THE Balochistan government seems to be taking steps to improve women’s integration into society and the workforce...
13 Jun 2021

Deprived of cricket

THE federal cabinet has disallowed PTV to enter into an agreement with an Indian company for broadcast rights to...