Gen. Bajwa urges Afghan media to play role for peace

-Army Chief says it’s responsibility of people and media to identify spoilers
-Highlights importance of restoration of peace in Afghanistan
-15-member Afghan media delegation expresses gratitudes to Army Chief

RAWALPINDI: Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has said that peace in Afghanistan is Pakistan’s “earnest desire” and Islamabad will not let the spoilers derail the reconciliation process in the war-torn country.
His remarks come after a 15-member Afghan media delegation visited the General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi and met the army chief, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement on Friday.
Gen Qamar said it is the responsibility of the media and people to identify and defeat the spoilers of peace.
“Peace in Afghanistan is Pakistan’s earnest desire because peace of the two countries is interlinked, the ISPR quoted Gen Qamar as saying. He added that that the spoilers will not be allowed to derail the peace process.
The army chief said the media can act as a bridge to create a conducive environment for promoting cultural/social and people to people engagement between the two countries. Referring to Pakistan’s comprehensive border management regime, the COAS said the security of borders is in the best interest of the two neighbouring countries.
Alluding to the benefits of regional connectivity for the two nations, the military’s media wing said Gen Qamar highlighted the importance of restoration of peace in Afghanistan for sustainable development of the region.
Appreciating Pak-Afghan Youth Forum’s initiative for organising the journalists’ visit, the COAS hoped for more frequent exchange of visits in future. “Pak- Afghan youth is the hope for future peace and progress of the region,” he remarked.
The Afghan journalists thanked Gen Qamar for the opportunity for candid interaction and appreciated Pakistan’s sincerity and efforts for Afghan people including hosting of refugees and facilitative role in the Afghan peace process, according to the statement.
Earlier on Thursday, Prime Minister Imran Khan maintained that most of the refugees who came to Pakistan from Afghanistan supported the Taliban. “But Pakistan has no way of knowing who is supporting the Taliban or not,” the premier said while speaking to a group of Afghan journalists in Islamabad.
When asked about the bodies of Taliban fighters returning to Pakistan in recent days, PM Imran claimed that there were about three million Afghan refugees in Pakistan and “almost all of them were Pashtuns”. “Most of them, if not all, sympathise with the Taliban,” he added. “How can we check as to who was going to fight when 25,000 to 30,000 of Afghans travel to and from Afghanistan every day.”–ISPR