Powerful Afghan delegation arrives in Islamabad
KABUL (Pajhwok): A high-level Afghan delegation on Thursday reached Islamabad to discuss with Pakistani officials cooperation in combating terrorism and advancing peace talks with the insurgents, officials said.
Sayed Zafar Hashimi, the deputy presidential spokesman, told Pajhwok Afghan News the delegation included Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabani, Acting Defence Minister Masoum Stanikzai, and spymaster Rahmatullah Nabil.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Shekib Mustaghni told reports on Thursday that the delegation left Kabul for Islamabad this noon.
The Afghan delegation would ask the Pakistani government to define its clear stance on terrorism, he said.
On the other hand, some reports say the Afghan officials will meet Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, his national security advisor Sartaj Aziz and other Pakistani officials.
Pakistani news agencies reported that the Afghan officials would also be asked for a list of Pakistani Taliban operating from Afghanistan.
However, Zafar Hashimi told Pajhwok Afghan News the Afghan delegation would ask Pakistan to take serious steps against terrorists and would share an action plan in this regard.
Earlier, President Ashraf Ghani had said the recent wave of attacks in Kabul showed suicide training camps and facilities used for making explosive devices and sending them to Afghanistan to kill innocent people were still functional in Pakistan.
He had called the Peshawar school attack that left more than 150 schoolchildren dead as a significant point in the history of Pakistan. “The recent incidents in Kabul mark a significant point for us as well.”
In Pakistan, Sartaj Aziz told reporters that their priority had been reconciliation and that he understood President Ghani's anger and hoped to remove any “misunderstandings” during the talks. “They are frustrated obviously because bomb blasts and peace talks can't go together,” said Aziz.
Three attacks last week shocked Kabul in their scope and brutality. A truck bomb exploded early Friday morning, killing 15 people and wounding 240.
Hours later, a suicide bomber killed at least 20 cadets outside a police academy, while another 10 people died in an attack on a military camp used by US Army Special Forces. On Monday, an attack near Kabul's airport killed five people.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for most of the attacks.
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