1st round of quadrilateral meeting on Afghan talks on Jan. 16
Defence Minister Khwaja Muhammad Asif told the upper house the participants would work out a comprehensive road map for the second round of Afghan peace negotiations.
Briefing the Senate on Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen. Raheel Sharif’s recent visit to Kabul, Khwaja Asif said the meeting would demarcate responsibilities of each stakeholder.
He added Gen. Raheel had visited Kabul with the message that the peace process would necessarily be Afghan-led and Afghan-owned. The two sides agreed to pursue reconciliation with the Taliban groups willing to join the process.
The minister made clear the elements refusing to renounce violence would be dealt with under a mutually agreed plan. The peace process should not be disrupted just because certain groups were not part of it, he observed.
Islamabad hosted a first direct talks meeting between the Afghan government and Taliban in July, but the process broke down after the disclosure of the death of Mullah Omar.
Separately, a Foreign Office spokesman said dates were being firmed up for the first meeting of the quadrilateral coordination committee in Islamabad. The ‘Heart of Asia’ conference was marked by a warm welcome to visiting dignitaries.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.