Abbasi, Ghani agree on political solution to Afghan conflict

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PM Abbasi-led delegation meets Ghani, Abdullah in Kabul
DNA
KABUL
The leaders of Afghanistan and Pakistan promised to work together on regional security in a key face-to-face meeting on Friday, followed by delegation level talks at the Afghan Presidential Palace in Kabul.
“President Ghani and Prime Minister Abbasi discussed the entire gamut of Pak-Afghan relations including peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan, counter-terrorism, return of Afghan refugees, bilateral trade and regional connectivity,” said a statement from the Pakistani prime minister’s office following key meetings with Afghan president and met Chief Executive Dr. Abdullah Abdullah.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at the invitation of President Ghani is in the Afghan capital for a day-long visit, where he was accompanied by the Pakistani foreign minister, interior minister, Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and the National Security Adviser.
According to the statement, Prime Minister Abbasi welcomed President Ghani’s vision for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan and his offer of peace talks to Taliban.
“Both leaders called on the Taliban to respond positively to the peace offer and join the peace process without further delay. They agreed that there was no military solution to the ongoing Afghan conflict and that the political solution was the best way forward,” said the statement.
“The two leaders reiterated that terrorism was a common enemy and threat. They agreed not to allow their soils to be used for anti-state activities against each other.”
The visit came in the backdrop of Pakistan’s support to Ghani’s peace offering to the Taliban and wish of strengthening bilateral engagement with Islamabad.

A statement issued by the Foreign Office on Thursday night had said that during the visit, Abbasi would hold in-depth consultations with Ghani and Afghan Chief Executive Dr Abdullah Abdullah on matters of mutual interest, including strengthening of bilateral political, economic, security and counter-terrorism cooperation, repatriation of Afghan refugees, combating drug production and narco-trade, Afghan peace process and regional political and security situation.
“Pakistan will continue to support Afghan government’s development efforts through capacity building in infrastructure, educational and health sectors in Afghanistan,” it said further.