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US special envoy Khalilzad, Pak Army chief Bajwa discuss Afghan peace process


PTI, Jun 8, 2020, 2:50 PM IST

Islamabad: Special US Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad discussed the steps required for the start of the intra-Afghan negotiations during his meeting with Pakistan Army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa, the American embassy in Islamabad said on Monday, June 8.

Khalilzad visited Islamabad on Sunday and held talks with Bajwa on the Afghan peace process. He is traveling to Qatar, Pakistan, and Afghanistan as part of efforts to bring peace in the war-torn country.

During the three-nation tour, Khalilzad will review commitments in the recently signed US-Taliban Agreement and the US-Afghanistan Joint Declaration, specifically reducing violence and prisoner releases. The US has lost over 2,400 soldiers in Afghanistan since late 2001.

The US embassy said in a statement that in the meeting with General Bajwa, Ambassador Khalilzad discussed the steps required for the start of intra-Afghan negotiations.

“The two took note of recent progress created by the Eid ceasefire and accelerated prisoner releases as well as reduced violence ahead of intra-Afghan negotiations,” it said.

“Khalilzad expressed his appreciation for the role Prime Minister Imran Khan and General Bajwa are playing in support of peace in Afghanistan,” it said.

“They agreed that peace in Afghanistan offers an unprecedented opportunity to advance security, connectivity, and development for the region,” it said.

Earlier, the Pakistan Army said on Sunday that matters of mutual interest, overall regional security situation, including Afghan refugees issue/Afghan reconciliation process and Pak-Afghan border management were discussed in the meeting.

“It said that the two sides shared steps taken towards this and agreed to continue working towards mutually agreed goals.

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