Khar holds political dialogue with Taliban leadership in Kabul

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar, accompanied by a high-level Pakistani delegation, arrived in Kabul on Tuesday to have wide-ranging discussions with the Islamist Taliban leadership of Afghanistan on issues of security and economic cooperation.

Pakistan’s special representative for Afghanistan Mohammad Sadiq is also part of the delegation.

Khar is the first minister to visit the Afghan capital since the coalition government took over in April and Shehbaz Sharif became the Prime Minister. She will reaffirm Pakistan’s “continued commitment and support” for strengthening Afghan peace and prosperity, said the statement issued by the foreign ministry on Monday.

“As a friend and neighbor of Afghanistan, Pakistan will reaffirm its abiding solidarity with the people of Afghanistan, in particular through its efforts to ease the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and to create real opportunities for the economic prosperity of Afghan men, women, and children,” the statement added.

Khar meets Afghan Ministers

Shortly after landing in Kabul, Hina Rabbani Khar met the incumbent Afghan Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, according to the statement issued by the Foreign Office (FO).

Khar also met the Afghan Commerce Minister and discussed matters related to bilateral trade and economic cooperation.

Political Dialogue with the Afghan Government

Earlier, the Foreign Office highlighted that the Minister will carry out a political dialogue with the acting Afghan government.

A spokesperson for the foreign office, Mumtaz Zahra Baloch highlighted that bilateral relations, including cooperation in the areas of education, trade and investment, regional connectivity, people-to-people contacts, and matters related to regional security will be discussed during the dialogues.

Meanwhile, the Afghan officials also noted that Pakistan and Afghanistan have agreed to bring together new ways for bilateral relations, to review all common opportunities and problems through dialogue, and to make progress.

“Both sides have also agreed to take positive and productive steps for a solution to the problems,” Afghan deputy foreign affairs spokesperson Hafiz Zia Takal said in a Tweet.

Salma Khan
Salma writes on topics ranging from education to technology to business. She can be reached at Twitter and Facebook.

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