3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Services (PIPS) Auditorium, Islamabad
In continuance to an earlier offer in October 2017, Afghanistan’s top leadership on 28th February 2018 once again offered Taliban peace talks on host of issues including Taliban’s recognition by Kabul as political party and end of militancy against the government by Taliban and with a boarder objective of ending the 16 years’ long war in Afghanistan that caused death and destruction in that country. At a regional conference in Kabul recently, the Afghan leadership has called for a truce and a trust building process, expressing their readiness to accept Taliban as a political party allowing it to contest the elections to become part of the mainstream politics in the country. In return, Taliban have been asked to accept the peace initiative, the Afghan government and the Constitution of the country, even with some amendment in the Constitution to accommodate the Taliban as a political entity.
Pakistan has always been backing the efforts to hold unconditional talks with the Taliban and has expressed its readiness to facilitate any peace process which comes up as a result of this offer. Pakistan has been supporting peace process in Afghanistan as it considers that a stable and peaceful Afghanistan is important for peace in the region and is in Pakistan’s interest. Despite some of the irritating situation on the borders, Pakistan has expressed restraint in the interest of peace and security of the people in the war-ravaged country. Pakistan’s chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa has reiterated Pakistan’s stand on peace in Afghanistan while meeting his counterpart in Moscow during his visit in last week of April 2018.
The office of the National Security Adviser has formally welcomed The Afghan leadership’s desire seeking peace through dialogue saying Pakistan would facilitate the noble initiative as we believe that peace in Afghanistan is essential for peace in Pakistan that is why we had supported efforts for political reconciliation. Despite some visible tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan, leaderships in both countries have been pro-actively working behind the scene to find some common ground. The continued efforts of Pakistan’s top political and military leadership- the Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and the Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa- paved the way for such an important development.