US and Pakistan

US and Pakistan foreign ministers discuss Afghan peace process

The US Secretary of State and Pakistan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs have discussed the Afghan peace process in a telephone conversation on Sunday, May 16, the two officials said on Twitter.

The US Secretary of State said in a tweet posted on May 17 that he had a productive conversation with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Qureshi about progress on Pakistan’s counterterrorism commitments, continuing cooperation on Afghan peace, and supporting regional stability. “I look forward to continuing to work together in partnership,” he added.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s foreign minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, has stated that Pakistan strongly supports the Afghan peace process. “We believe achieving a peaceful political solution in Afghanistan to be a shared responsibility of all Afghan parties as well as the key international and regional stakeholders,” Qureshi said.

This comes as the intra-Afghan talks have been stalled for months and no progress has been made in the peace process. A high-level conference that was tentatively scheduled to be convened in Istanbul between the Afghan government and the Taliban in April has been postponed indefinitely.

Negotiating teams of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban meet for the first time in months on Friday, May 14, agreeing to resume their negotiations after Eid al-Fitr.

In his latest remarks about the process, Chairperson of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah said in a meeting with the Pakistan Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa in Kabul that the Taliban have not used the negotiating opportunity with the Afghan government properly.