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Pakistan wants peace, prosperity in Afghanistan: FM Qureshi

Pakistan wants peace, prosperity in Afghanistan: FM Qureshi
March 30, 2021

DUSHANBE (92 News) – Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has reiterated that Pakistan always wanted peace and prosperity in Afghanistan.

Addressing the 9th Ministerial Conference of the Heart of Asia-Istanbul Process, in Dushanbe on Tuesday, FM Qureshi said that Pakistan will continue to support a stable, united, democratic, sovereign and prosperous Afghanistan at peace with itself and its neighbours.

He also said that Afghan people have a historic opportunity for establishing peace in their country. He said that the deliberations at the conference will be meaningful and productive and the Dushanbe declaration will reflect our resolve to support and stand by the Afghan people at this most consequential time in their history.

The minister mentioned that the Afghan peace process is at a defining junctionand Afghanistan has never been so close to turning the tide. "Having faced conflict and instability for over 40 years, Afghanistan has never been so close to turning the tide," he maintained.

Shah Mehmood Qureshi recalled how the Afghan parties gathering in Doha in September 2020 was a milestone that had occurred after the US-Taliban peace agreement was signed in February 2020.

“The progress made, thus far, has indeed created a historic opportunity for the Afghan leadership to achieve an inclusive broad-based comprehensive negotiated political settlement,” he added.

Expressing concern over the violence in Afghanistan, he said that precious lives are being lost due to violent incidents in the country. He said that Pakistan played a vital role for continuing the Afghan Peace Process.

He said that Pakistan consistently urged the Afghan people to remain constructively engaged for securing a positive outcome. He urged the Afghan people to take the process forward through good faith, substantive and result-oriented negotiation.

He said that Pakistan has committed One billion US dollars for Afghanistan’s development and reconstruction out of which nearly $ 500 million have already been spent on infrastructure and capacity building projects. He said that a new visa regime has been instituted to facilitate travel.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that besides COVID-19 Pakistan has opened five border crossing points with Afghanistan to facilitate bilateral and transit trade. Pakistan has also operationalized Gwadar Sea Port for Afghan Transit Trade.

He said that Pakistan is committed to move forward on regional connectivity and energy projects such as CASA 100 and TAPI.

No military solution to Afghan conflict

FM Qureshi said there is a consensus that Afghan conflict has no solution other than the comprehensive dialogue. Speaking to the journalists, he said that Pakistan has been making the world realize for years that there is no military solution to the Afghan conflict.

The foreign minister Qureshi said that the world knows about Pakistan's efforts for peace and we are keeping an eye on the future. He said he had talked to his Turkish counterpart and Afghan peace Process came under discussion and today a meeting with Afghan Foreign Minister is scheduled.