ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said that direct engagement between Afghanistan stakeholders would end the prolonged conflict in Afghanistan and bring durable peace to the war-torn country.
The PM was talking to US Central Command (CENTCOM) chief General Kenneth McKenzie Jr, who called on him at Prime Minister’s House here.
Gen McKenzie was on his first trip to Pakistan after assuming responsibilities last month.
Underscoring the need for an intra-Afghan dialogue, the prime minister said that the Afghan stakeholders should sit together to discuss the contours of their future polity after the withdrawal of foreign troops.
He reiterated Pakistan’s desire to have good neighbourly relations with Afghanistan.
Welcoming Gen McKenzie to Islamabad, the prime minister apprised him of his government’s commitment to implement the National Action Plan, which had the backing of all political parties in the country.
Sharing the priorities of his government, including human development and vigorous economic reforms, he reiterated Pakistan’s vision for normalisation of relations with all its neighbours, including India.
The prime minister stressed the need for continued military cooperation between Pakistan and the United States to deal with the emerging threats, especially the ISIS which was concentrating on Pak-Afghan border.
Earlier in the day, McKenzie called on Naval Chief Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi at the Naval Headquarters in Islamabad to discuss matters pertaining to maritime security.
According to Navy’s spokesperson, General McKenzie was welcomed by the Naval chief upon his arrival at the Naval Headquarters.
Both the dignitaries discussed matters related to bilateral interests and maritime security.
The naval chief apprised the US commander about the steps taken by Pakistan Navy to curb maritime terrorism and piracy.
General McKenzie assured to provide every possible cooperation for regional peace and stability.
Earlier on Sunday, McKenzie had called on Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa at General Headquarters, said Inter-Services Public Relations(ISPR).
According to the military’s media wing, Pakistan-India tension and Afghan peace process were discussed in the meeting.
Matters of mutual interests, regional security, and geostrategic situation also came under discussion during the meeting, said ISPR.