Pakistan, Saudi Arabia call for inclusive govt for peace in Afghanistan

By Aamir Latif


KARACHI, Pakistan (AA): Pakistan and Saudi Arabia called Sunday for an “inclusive political settlement” in Afghanistan as the Taliban struggle to form a new government that can attain international recognition.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who spoke by phone on the latest developments in the war-torn country, also agreed that the international community must step up its engagement in order to avert humanitarian and refugee crises, said a statement from the Prime Minister Office.

The two leaders had a detailed discussion on the latest situation in Afghanistan, the statement said.

Underscoring that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan is vital for Pakistan and regional stability, Khan insisted that the international community has the responsibility to stand by the Afghan people and support them economically as well as to help rebuild the country.

He also emphasized the need to address Afghanistan’s urgent humanitarian needs and take steps to ensure its economic stability.

The two leaders also agreed to work together to further augment and diversify bilateral ties in all spheres, the statement said.

Khan also reaffirmed Pakistan’s support for the kingdom’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Pakistani leader also held phone conversations with the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who is also the deputy supreme commander of the United Arab Emirates armed forces.

The three leaders discussed bilateral relations and exchanged views on the evolving situation in Afghanistan.

They agreed to remain in “close” contact on bilateral matters as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest, said a separate statement.

Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE were the only countries that recognized the first Taliban government in 1996.

[Photo: Taliban and Pakistani security keep guard at Torkham border crossing as Afghans enter Pakistan after Taliban’s takeover on September 02, 2021, in Torkham, Pakistan. Photographer: Muhammet Nazım Taşcı/AA]

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