PM Khan says Pakistan will do anything for peaceful Afghanistan
By Zeeshan GhayurFriday – November 20, 2020
The PM along-with Afghan president delivered remarks, during a joint press stakeout, at Afghan presidential palace compound, in the capital city.
He mentioned, “So the whole idea of coming at a time when violence is increasing in Afghanistan is to assure you that we, the people and the government of Pakistan (GoP), have only one concern and that is we want peace.”
PM Khan reiterated, “We feel that the people of Afghanistan have suffered for four decades, and if ever a human community needed peace its Afghanistan.”
He grieved, “Pakistan played its role in getting first the Taliban to talk to the Americans and then the intra-Afghan dialogue and we noticed with concern that the level of violence despite the talks is rising.”
PM Khan expressed, “So my idea of choosing this time to come was to assure you that Pakistan will do everything, whatever is possible, to help reduce this violence and in fact move towards a ceasefire.”
He stressed, “Pakistan is the country after Afghanistan which is most interested in peace in Afghanistan.”
PM Khan reminded, “The former federally administered tribal areas (FATA), which have now merged in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), were devastated by the war on terror” adding “Half of the population was internally displaced, their livelihood was badly affected, billions and billions of rupees of damage was done there, and so the best way we can help people on both sides of the border is if there is peace, there is trade and connectivity.”
He noted, “Commerce minister had very fruitful talks in the past three days, we hope that this trade and connectivity will increase between the two countries and for that it is imperative that the level of violence goes down.”
PM Khan narrated, “We have formed committees, the idea of committees is to ensure that there is communication between us and our security agencies” assuring “Whenever you feel that there is somewhere Pakistan can help in reducing the violence please let us know, we assure you that whatever possible within our grasp, we will be doing our utmost to reduce the level of violence.”
He recalled, “Until the 1960s and 1970s, the favourite place for Pakistanis to visit was Kabul and a lot of people from Afghanistan used to visit Peshawar; we have historical links, connections, relations between the two countries.”
PM Khan said, “I know all about the history of Afghanistan and I noticed that you know a lot about the history of Pakistan and what is India’s, we are both students of history and therefore Kabul is one of those cities which is of immense interest to us and Afghanistan.”
He revealed, “I had been planning for at least 50 years to visit Afghanistan and Kabul, but it never happened so I’m pleased that you invited me and I had the opportunity to visit this historic city.”
Afghan president Ghani said, “You come with a series of very important messages that you self articulate but fundamental to this is that violence is not an answer, a comprehensive political settlement for an enduring peace within the framework of our values, our constitution in the Islamic republic is the way to the future.”
He mentioned, “Within this we can move forward and the request of Afghan people is for a comprehensive ceasefire as soon as that will be feasible.”
Afghan president Ghani reiterated, “All of us need to understand that resort to violence, the region has shown and you have seen from your personal experience, is not an answer.”
He preached, “Embracing constructive politics, politics of engagement, inclusive politics is the way to the future.”
Afghan president Ghani noted, “Practically we have agreed to form committees to deal with key topics, to make sure that the foundation for trust that has been established with your trip today, becomes an enduring process.”
He hoped, “Our common objective is to take a leap of faith to overcome the distress that has haunted our relationship.”
Afghan president Ghani agreed, “We have come to an understanding that a shared vision regarding cooperation is not only essential for relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan but a harbinger of regional cooperation and connectivity.”
He stressed, “Our common focus, what inspires us both, is poverty eradication, empowerment of citizens of our countries.”
Afghan president Ghani stated, “Within the framework of our Islamic constitutions — the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan — respect for our Prophet Muhammad (peace.be.upon.him) is in the blood and mind of every Muslim and as I brought to your attention, over a thousand years review of literature in our history shows nothing but respect.”
He continued, “There is not a single joke that you can find because the Prophet’s (peace.be.upon.him) life and his traditions embodies the perfect Muslim’s behaviour and as a guide to all of us” adding “I would like to thank you and assure you of our cooperation in making sure that our occidental counterparts understand that positive freedom and negative freedom need to be differentiated.”
Afghan president Ghani elaborated, “Negative freedom is a freedom that exercise of which hurts other people and the place of our Prophet Muhammad (peace.be.upon.him) and our Islamic belief, culture and civilisation is such that respect for the Prophet (peace.be.upon.him) is the respect for the entire Muslim world.”
He culminated, “I would also like to inform the media that I will be honoured to accept your invitation to visit the Islamic Republic of Pakistan” adding “Thank you for coming and thanks to all your colleagues for their very productive and constructive engagements.”
Meanwhile, according to a press release, PM Khan paid a day-long visit to Kabul on Thursday at the invitation of Afghan president Ghani.
This was the PM’s first visit to Afghanistan since assuming office in August 2018.
PM Khan had wide-ranging talks with Afghan president Ghani to review efforts during the past two years to promote shared objectives of strengthening Pakistan-Afghanistan bilateral relations and achieving lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan.
He reaffirmed Pakistan’s support to a peaceful, stable, united, democratic, sovereign and prosperous Afghanistan.
PM Khan reiterated his long-standing view that there was no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan and that a negotiated political settlement was the only way forward for enduring peace, stability and prosperity in Afghanistan.
He called on all sides for taking necessary measures for reduction in violence leading to ceasefire to protect Afghan lives.
Underscoring the importance of an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement, the PM underlined that Pakistan will respect the decisions made by Afghans in the peace process.
He also cautioned against those who could spoil the peace efforts.
During the PM’s visit, Pakistan and Afghanistan also issued a document titled “Shared Vision between Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and Islamic Republic of Pakistan to Support Peace and Stability in Both Countries and the Wider Region.”
The Shared Vision is aimed at advancing a forward-looking cooperative partnership between the two countries for political, economic and people-to-people exchanges.
The two leaders agreed to constitute committees to pursue security and peace-related matters.
The PM expressed satisfaction at increasing high-level leadership exchanges imparting a steady momentum to bilateral cooperation in diverse fields.
In this regard, he appreciated that the recent visit of the advisor on commerce and investment Abdul Razak Dawood to Kabul from 16-18 November led to important breakthroughs for commencement of negotiations on preferential trade agreement (PTA), progress in revision of Afghanistan Pakistan Transit Trade Cooperation Authority (APTTCA), customs assistance agreement, and understanding to have memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation between two central banks.
The two leaders also agreed to expedite infrastructure and energy connectivity projects.
They also discussed development of new rail-road projects between Pakistan and Afghanistan.