Islamabad, Kabul ‘to work together for common goals’

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad and Kabul have agreed to work collectively and to maintain their contacts in pursuit of the “common objective”.
This agreement was reached during a meeting between National Security Adviser Lt Gen (retd) Nasser Khan Janjua and Afghan Ambassador Omar Zakhilwal.
The NSA office said the two sides exchanged views on the bilateral relations and the ongoing efforts for peace and stability in the region.
Janjau had recently visited Kabul and held wide ranging talks with Afghan leadership, including President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah and others.
During the meeting, Ghani had invited Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to visit Kabul for a ‘comprehensive bilateral dialogue’ to open a new chapter in the relationship between the two neighbours.
The NSA had welcomed the Afghan leadership’s resolve for improving ties with Pakistan as he made it clear that ‘coerced, blamed and isolated’ Pakistan would be of lesser use to Afghan peace efforts.
Relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan have remained tense for many months primarily because of the growing mistrust and differences on the Afghan endgame. Both sides have long accused each other for turning a blind eye to certain militant groups.
The two have also had serious differences on the roadmap to Afghan peace. While Afghanistan wants a military solution, Pakistan is adamant that solution to the conflict can only be achieved through sustained and all-inclusive dialogue.
Islamabad’s perspective has, however, prevailed as the Afghan president recently launched a new initiative offering unconditional dialogue to Afghan Taliban. Pakistan has welcomed Ghani’s peace overtures, although Afghan Taliban have yet to respond to the offer.