ISLAMABAD: The foreign ministers of Pakistan and China on Tuesday urged the world not to forget the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan because of the Russia-Ukraine war.

A statement issued by the Foreign Office said that Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi during their telephone conversation “emphasised the need for the international community to sustain humanitarian assistance for the Afghan people”.

It said the two foreign ministers discussed the continuing efforts for peace and stability in Afghanistan.

War in Ukraine, which caused over one million refugees to flee to the neighbouring European countries, has shifted the world’s attention away from the situation in Afghanistan despite generous pledges made last year, thereby leaving the Afghans to bear the brunt of economic meltdown.

Mr Qureshi explained to Mr Yi Pakistan’s position on war in Ukraine. He expressed the hope that talks between Russia and Ukraine would succeed and the two sides would reach a diplomatic solution.

The foreign minister further mentioned Pakistan’s concerns over the adverse economic consequences of the Russia-Ukraine conflict for developing countries resulting from escalating fuel and food costs and disruption of supply chains.

Speaking about the terrorist attack in Peshawar, he said the government was committed to continuing its “unrelenting counter-terrorism efforts and bringing the perpetrators to justice”.

Mr Yi conveyed his condolences over the loss of lives in the terrorist attack on a mosque in Peshawar.

Published in Dawn, March 9th, 2022

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