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Afghan peace hinges on Pakistan: Gilani

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani Friday said Pakistan must be involved in the “negotiation process” as it is part of the solution to the Afghan problem. Talking to office bearers of Diplomatic Correspondent Association of Pakistan (DCAP) here at Prime Minister House, he said, “Without involving Pakistan, no negotiation process can succeed.”

The Prime Minister said Pakistan has taken initiative on the Afghanistan issue and is making sincere efforts to ensure peace and security in the region. Gilani said, “Pakistan is part of the solution to Afghan issue and not the problem.”
About Pakistan’s role in reconciliation process in Afghanistan, he pointed out that during the last visit of President Hamid Karzai to Islamabad it was agreed that Afghanistan would share the plan with Pakistan.   He said so far this plan has not been shared with Pakistan and once information is provided a decision would be taken as to how Pakistan can cooperate.
He said Pakistan’s relations with Afghanistan have improved and these are far better today than yesterday. Replying to a question about the recent efforts of Afghanistan government to start negotiation process with the Taliban, the Prime Minister said we want Afghanistan to lead any such process but Pakistan should be a part of it.
He said the Afghan leadership has yet to discuss its new initiative of dialogue process with United States and expressed the hope that it would also discuss it with Pakistan before going after it. The Prime Minister said Pakistan has high stakes in Afghanistan’s stability, unity, territorial integrity, and prosperity.
He said, “The Af-Pak concept is inherently flawed. We have strongly rejected such concept.” Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said the United States has been told in categorical terms that drone attacks were counter-productive.
The Prime Minister said Pakistan is pursuing strategic dialogue with the United States on the basis of mutual respect and its national interests.  Gilani said Pakistan is demanding of the United States civil nuclear technology cooperation on the pattern of its agreement with India.-Online


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