Turkey and Pakistan Hold Talks Over Afghan Peace Process

On Thursday, Khan spoke by phone with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, about Afghan Peace according to a statement.  

In advance of key talks in Turkey this month, the leaders of Pakistan and Turkey talked to discuss the ongoing Afghan peace process, with Prime Minister Imran Khan reaffirming Pakistan’s commitment to a negotiated political solution to the conflict, according to a statement.  

According to the statement, Prime Minister Khan stressed the importance of a negotiated political resolution of the conflict in Afghanistan in the regional context, ahead of the recently announced scheduled US troop withdrawal. 

Moreover, the Prime Minister emphasised that Pakistan had completely endorsed and promoted the US-Taliban Peace Agreement and subsequent Intra-Afghan Negotiations.  Khan described the intra-Afghan peace talks as a “historic opportunity” to reach a comprehensive, inclusive, and broad-based political settlement.”  

Subsequently, the Turkish government did not issue a comment on the conversation right away. From April 24 to May 10, Turkey will host a 10-day Afghan peace summit. Participants will include the Afghan government, the Taliban, the United States, the UN, Qatar, and others.   

The Taliban have declined to take part in negotiations. In a statement on Tuesday, they said they will not participate in further talks. However, “until all international powers have finally left our homeland.”  

Blinken Visits Kabul 

On Thursday, Blinken met with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, the country’s chief negotiator Abdullah Abdullah, and senior US officials. Blinken claimed that his visit was intended to demonstrate his country’s “ongoing commitment” to Afghanistan.  

He said, “The relationship is evolving, but the partnership is lasting.”  

PM Khan gave remarks as US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken arrived in Kabul on Thursday to brief officials on US President Joe Biden’s decision to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan fully by September 11.  

Furthermore, President Biden of the United States declared on Wednesday that his country would withdraw all troops from Afghanistan by September 11, the 20th anniversary of the country’s longest war.  

The Taliban responded to the announcement stating “problems would undoubtedly be compounded”. Adding further, “if troops did not withdraw by the earlier agreed date.”  

The new deadline pushes back the May deadline set by the US and Taliban in February 2020. As reported, the new deadline is September 11.  

Pakistan an important player in Afghan peace process 

Pakistan was instrumental in initiating the first direct peace talks between the United States and the Taliban. It was also instrumental in initiating talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government.  

In response to Biden’s troop withdrawal proposal, a Pakistani foreign ministry made a statement. The ministry stated, ” the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan should coincide with progress in the peace process.”  

Furthermore, he Stated, “We hope that the upcoming Afghan leadership conference in Turkey will provide a significant opportunity for Afghans to advance toward a negotiated political settlement.”  


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