HPC team to meet Mullah Baradar in Pakistan
President Hamid Karzai, Prime Ministers Nawaz Sharif and David Cameron agreed on joint efforts at bringing security and economic prosperity to a region haunted by terrorism.
The three sides agreed that a High Peace Council delegation would visit Pakistan in near future to meet former Taliban No. 2 Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, a statement from the Presidential Palace in Kabul said.
It added the overall regional situation, the war on terror and economic cooperation also figured at the meeting on the sidelines of the 9th World Islamic Economic Forum.
Interior ministers from the two countries would soon hold talks on boosting security at border crossings, with Pakistan pledging cooperation with efforts to eliminate terrorist safe havens on its soil.
The neighbours also agreed cement economic relations, implement a transit trade agreement and launch work on a joint dam project in the eastern Kunar province.
Sharif, who promised support for securing next year's elections in Afghanistan, accepted Karzai's invitation to visit Kabul. Dates for the trip will be firmed up in next few weeks.
He assured the Afghan and British leaders Pakistan would not back any particular group in Afghanistan after the 2014 pullout of foreign combat troops.
During their fourth tripartite summit at 10 Downing Street, they discussed the shared interest of Afghanistan and Pakistan in advancing regional peace, stability and prosperity.
A spokesperson for Cameron said it was the first meeting among the three countries since Sharif took office earlier in the year.
On Sunday, officials in Kabul said Karzai would grill Pakistan to reveal Baradar’s location. Presidential spokesman Aimal Faizi said issues concerning the anti-terror campaign and measures to ensure stability in Afghanistan would be on the agenda.
Since his release on Sept. 20, the Taliban leader’s location has been a source of speculation. Kabul believes the ex-commander could persuade the Taliban to enter substantive peace talks with the Afghan government.
Karzai is accompanied by his National Security Advisor Dr. Rangin Dadfar Spanta, Finance Minister Omar Zakhilwal, HPC Chairman Salahuddin Rabbani and acting Foreign Minister Ershad Ahmadi.
As the three leaders met, an explosive report in The New York Times claimed the United States had caught Afghan intelligence officials red-handed attempting to gain leverage over Pakistan by cultivating an alliance with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).
The report said US forces raided a convoy carrying senior TTP leader Latif Mehsud and captured him near Kabul. “The disrupted plan involved Afghan intelligence trying to work with the Pakistan Taliban to find a trump card in a baroque regional power game that is likely to intensify after the American withdrawal next year,” the NYT said.
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