Pakistan, Afghanistan to develop strategy for establishing peace in Kabul


QINGDAO: President Mamnoon Hussain on Sunday stated that Islamabad and Kabul will be working together to draft a comprehensive strategy for establishing peace in Afghanistan while speaking in a session of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Qingdao.

The president talked about relations with Afghanistan and said, “Pakistan and Afghanistan are working on a comprehensive strategy on a bilateral basis to establish peace in Afghanistan,” adding that “ceasefire in Afghanistan is a positive sign for regional peace.”

He further stated,“Peace and stability in Afghanistan is our common objective and Pakistan is playing its due role in this regard.”

President Hussain, while addressing the summit, also said that Pakistan has rendered unprecedented sacrifices in the war against terror to bring peace to the region.

“The law and order situation has improved in Pakistan over the last few years due to effective efforts against terrorism and extremism,” he said.

Having said that, he urged the leaders to unite and take effective measures for capacity building and skill development of the youth in member states.

Furthermore, President Mamoon also added that the general elections 2018 will bring economic stability in Pakistan.

He maintained that Pakistan has witnessed an improvement in services and agricultural sector, adding that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has further strengthened Pakistan’s economy.

Moreover, Mamnoon Hussain also felicitated the Chinese government and the people of China by issuing a special postal stamp for successfully hosting the SCO Summit.

In addition to that, the summit witnessed the signing of over 20 documents outlining future trajectory in a number of spheres.

Meeting with leaders

President Mamnoon Hussain met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and exchanged pleasantries during the summit.

The two leaders were photographed shaking hands and held a brief chat after a press conference by Chinese President Xi Jinping.

However, the neighbouring countries will reportedly not hold a bilateral meeting at the summit.

Hussain and Modi are among leaders who attended the media briefing after the culmination of the 18th SCO summit.

The Chinese president gave both the leaders of Pakistan and India a “special welcome” to their first summit of the SCO since their countries joined the group last year.

Following this, the Pakistani president also met with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Iran’s Hassan Rouhani and President Mirzyoyey of Uzbekistan.

During a meeting, President Mamnoon and President Putin discussed “bilateral contemporary regional and global issues,” said a press release issued by the President’s Office.

Matters including trade, energy, security, education and people-to-people contact were identified as ‘avenues’ for cooperation.

Earlier, on Saturday, the president met with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the SCO Summit.

The Chinese counterpart expressed unequivocal support for Islamabad to safeguard its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“China is willing to intensify high-level contact and strategic communication with Pakistan. The China-Pakistan all-weather strategic cooperation is not only the shared asset of the two countries but also offers a model for building a new type of international relations,” said Xi.

Hussain congratulated Xi on being elected the general-secretary of the Communist Party of China for the second time.

Founded in 2001, the SCO also includes the former Central Asian Soviet republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The leaders of all eight member countries are in attendance at the summit, including President of Kazakhstan N. A. Nazarbayev, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Tajik President E.Rahmon and Uzbek President Sh. M. Mirziyoyev, in addition to Modi and Hussain.

Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran, Mongolia and Turkmenistan are attending the meeting as observers.

Representatives of the United Nations, Commonwealth of Independent States, Collective Security Treaty Organization, Association of South East Asian Nations, Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia, International Monetary Fund and World Bank are also in attendance.