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Kabul, Islamabad Envoys Stress Need for Joint Efforts for Peace in Afghanistan

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KABUL: Afghan and Pakistan Foreign Ministers have held a telephonic conversation and discussed issues related to the Afghan peace process and stressed for joint efforts for peace in Afghanistan.

Afghan Foreign Minister, Haneef Attmar said he held “good discussion” with Pakistan FM, Shah Mahmoiod Qureshi on strengthening bilateral trade, and advancing the Afghan Peace Process.

“We discussed the need for violence reduction and moving towards a ceasefire and engaging our Ulema in joint efforts for peace in Afghanistan,” Mr. Attmar said.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Foreign Ministry in a statement said that both Foreign Ministers have discussed matters of mutual interests.

Highlighting Pakistan’s policy to strengthen trade between the two countries, Qureshi drew Foreign Minister Atmar’s attention towards proposed establishment of Border Sustenance Markets, the statement added.

He underlined that it was a special initiative of the Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to boost local trade and economic activity in the border regions.

Reiterating Pakistan’s consistent support to a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan, Qureshi underlined that the Intra-Afghan Negotiations (IAN) provided an historic opportunity for the Afghan leadership to achieve an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement in Afghanistan.

Mrl Qureshi expressed concern on the high level of violence in Afghanistan and emphasized progress in the IAN which would also facilitate reduction in violence, leading to a ceasefire.

During the call, Qureshi also raised the issue of Pakistani prisoners who had been languishing in Afghan jails over minor crimes, according to the statement

He expressed the hope that prisoners would be released as per the Presidential decree, providing them an opportunity to return back to their families.

The Intra-Afghan Negotiations had provided a window of opportunity for return of lasting peace in Afghanistan.

Pakistan had always held that there was no military solution to the Afghan conflict and a political settlement was the only way forward, the statement said, adding, Pakistan would continue to play its positive role towards supporting the Afghan Peace Process and strengthening bilateral relations with Afghanistan.

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