Pakistan has welcomed the commencement of the second round of Intra Afghan Negotiations in Doha on Wednesday, stated the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA).
“The two teams have made significant progress by finalizing the rules and procedures last month and have now reconvened to negotiate on substantive issues,” it added.
The statement further highlighted how the year 2020 had witnessed substantial progress towards peace in Afghanistan, with a number of positive developments including the conclusion of U.S.-Taliban Peace Agreement on February 29, 2020, the start of intra-Afghan Negotiations on September 12, 2020, and the agreement on Rules and Procedures on December 2, 2020, which paved the way for meaningful progress in the peace talks.
“We remain hopeful that the year 2021 will witness the dawn of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan,” said the Foreign Office.
The Ministry reiterated that it was hopeful that the two negotiating teams would continue to engage with an open-mind and would observe patience, prudence and perseverance to seize the ‘historic opportunity for peace’. It called upon both sides to remain constructively engaged and to show flexibility in the negotiations for reaching an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement which would lead to lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan.
“Pakistan’s constructive role and facilitation of the Afghan peace process has been recognized by all sides and the international community. We strongly believe that there is no military solution to the Afghan conflict and that the only way forward is a negotiated political solution through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process. Pakistan, on its part, would continue to extend all possible support for the Afghan peace process,” stated the MoFA.
High level of violence in Afghanistan resulting in loss of precious Afghan lives remains a matter of concern, said the Ministry, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan had repeatedly called on all sides to take measures for reduction in violence leading to ceasefire.
“We are hopeful that the two sides will prioritize working out a road-map for reduction in violence and ceasefire in the negotiations.”
Pakistan reiterates its abiding commitment to a peaceful, stable, united, sovereign, democratic and prosperous Afghanistan, concluded the Foreign Office.