Kabul trilateral meeting agrees on ‘joint anti-terror efforts’

KABUL: Foreign ministers of Afghanistan, Pakistan and China met in Kabul on Saturday to continue their efforts on “building political mutual trust and support reconciliation, development cooperation and connectivity, security cooperation and counter-terrorism”.
A joint statement released after the Second Afghanistan-China-Pakistan Foreign Ministers Dialogue in Kabul, reads that the three sides reaffirmed their commitment to further strengthening their relations, deepening cooperation and advancing connectivity under the Belt and Road Initiative, Regional Economic Cooperation Conference on Afghanistan (RECCA) and other regional economic initiatives.
According to the statement, Afghanistan, China and Pakistan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Counter-Terrorism to advance their cooperation in this respect. 
The statement says that the three sides reiterated their strong resolve to fight terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and without any distinction. 
The statement reads that the three sides reiterated their support to an Afghan-owned and Afghan-led as well as an inclusive peace process.  
Meanwhile, the three foreign ministers agreed to jointly continue their efforts for building political mutual trust and support reconciliation, development, cooperation and connectivity, society cooperation and counter-terrorism as the three areas of the trilateral cooperation. 
The foreign ministers addressed a press conference in Kabul on Saturday where they stressed the need for mutual cooperation and a joint effort to end violence in the country. 
Addressing the press conference, Acting Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani said the meeting was focused on security and counter-terrorism and that they emphasized on security, ending violence, and implementation of Afghanistan-Pakistan action plan.
“We discussed regional peace and regional projects to connect the countries. The projects will improve economic development. We hope china will implement economic projects in Afghanistan,” Rabbani said.
He said one of the main goals of the trilateral meeting is to work for peace and stability in Afghanistan.Rabbani said security and fighting against terrorism as well as creating political reconciliation were discussed in the meeting. 
He said that the Afghan government hopes that Pakistan and China will cooperate with Afghanistan’s peace process and that now the time has come to show practical support.Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Afghanistan and Pakistan agreed to solve their problems through peaceful ways, adding that the three sides agreed to fight jointly against terrorist groups.
“We support Afghanistan and Pakistan efforts for peace and we call on the Taliban to join the peace process,” Chinese Foreign Minister said. “Cooperation between Afghanistan, Pakistan and China is import to bring peace in Afghanistan.”
Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi stressed the need for mutual trust between Afghanistan and Pakistan and called for ending the “blame game” between the two countries.
“I came here to make trust bridge and reach peace and stability. Any improvement in Afghanistan will benefit Pakistan,” he said. “I am here to boost our bilateral trade.”
He said they agreed in the meeting to fight jointly against terrorism.According to him, one of the main goals of the trilateral meeting is to work for peace and stability in Afghanistan.
“I am here to engage with Afghanistan and your happiness lies in my happiness. That is my mindset. Let’s not stick to the past and stop putting finger on Pakistan,” Qureshi said. 
It was the second meeting of the three foreign ministers after their kick off meeting in Beijing last year. The three foreign ministers are expected to meet in Islamabad next year.
The Kabul Times

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