Afghanistan holds conference to plot course against terrorism in region

Casey Dawson
February 17, 2018

At a time when Pakistan's relations with both the United States and Afghanistan are tense, Islamabad has offered an olive branch to Washington and Kabul, seeking a "collaborative and persistent approach" to deal with regional security challenges.

According to ISPR, Army Chief told that there are no terrorist sanctuaries left on the Pakistani soil.

The comments came amid allegations by US and Afghan officials that armed opponents of the Afghan government "use Pakistan soil for attacks across the border", which is denied by Islamabad.

US CENTCOM chief General Joseph Votel and General John Nicholson, who commands the NATO Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan and army chiefs of Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan also attended the conference.

A few weeks ago, the Afghan government revealed it had started a process of rapprochement with some factions of the Taliban in Turkey, with a view to initiate a peace process, an option that new leader of the main Taliban group, led by Haibatullah, ruled out.

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The army chiefs will also look at the region's burgeoning narcotics trade as Afghanistan hits record levels of poppy production.

In his address, Gen Qamar reiterated that the path to regional peace and stability passes through Afghanistan. We also expect that the US-led West would also seriously give thought to oft-repeated suggestion of Pakistan to lay focus on negotiated settlement of the conflict rather than intensified use of military power that has so far produced no worthwhile result except complicating things further.

The delegation held talks with Pakistani leadership and discussed security issues, besides reportedly handing over undeniable evidence, which claimed that planning for spate of attack in Afghanistan was made in Pakistan, to Islambad.

Pakistan forces are now involved in fencing its long and mostly porous border with Afghanistan to stop the illegal cross-border movement of the militants.

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