Pakistan, China support Afghan-led and owned peace process: Qureshi


International | Written by : IANS| Updated:


Pakistan, China support Afghan-led and owned peace process: Qureshi

Beijing  Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi held talks with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi here on Tuesday over the situation in war-torn Afghanistan and said that his country and China strongly support the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.

Qureshi was in China on the third leg of his four-nation visit as part of the government's policy of outreach in the neighbourhood. He visited Afghanistan and Iran on Monday and was scheduled to visit Russia before returning to Pakistan on December 26.

Qureshi and Wang had an in-depth discussion on the recent changes concerning the situation in Afghanistan and reached a broad consensus, Xinhua news agency reported.

The two sides said they believed that the Afghanistan issue could not be solved through military solutions and political reconciliation was the only viable way, the report said.

They welcomed all efforts made by relevant parties and expressed willingness to keep close communication and strategic coordination over the issue. 

Qureshi also appreciated China's important role in furtherance of peace and development in Afghanistan, particularly through China-Afghanistan-Pakistan trilateral mechanism, according to Geo News.

Both the Foreign Ministers also pledged to further strengthen China-Pakistan's all-weather strategic cooperative partnership so as to elevate the level of all-round cooperation.

Qureshi called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) an undertaking of extensive importance for Pakistan and the region. 

He visited Afghanistan's capital Kabul on Monday on the first leg of his trip, where he held -- what he described as -- "productive meetings" with Afghan leadership. Later, he travelled to Tehran where he met Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. It was his first official visit to Iran.

According to Dawn newspaper, Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan also spoke to Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani on Monday over the Afghan peace process.

Qatar had been hosting the Taliban's political office since 2013, but Pakistan-backed talks between the US and Taliban were held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) capital. This apparently was done to accommodate Saudi Arabia and the UAE in the process, the daily said.

But according to diplomatic observers, the move did not go well with the Qatari leadership.