KABUL - In a signal indicating a thaw in the tense relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan, the CEO’s office said on Monday that Kabul and Islamabad will resume bilateral talks, TOLO News has reported.
According to Jawed Faisal, a deputy spokesman for CEO Abdullah Abdullah, the Pakistani chief of army staff, Qamar Javed Bajwa, assured Afghanistan that this time Islamabad will act upon its commitments on certain issues.
Faisal said this time Pakistan has pledged to abide by its commitments.
Meanwhile, a number of lawmakers in parliament said in view of Pakistan’s controversial role in the fight against insurgency, the Afghan government should be vigilant in making sure Pakistan does not deceive Afghanistan.
The breakthrough comes a day after Bajwa visited Kabul where he met top Afghan officials including Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah. According to the Presidential Palace, the two sides discussed issues including that relating to security and trade relations.
Bajwa was accompanied by the chief of Pakistan’s intelligence agency (ISI) and Pakistan’s deputy minister of foreign affairs.
“Pakistan itself reached out to us; we are also willing to have close relationships with neighboring countries,” said Faisal.
According to political analysts, pressure from the international community has continued to mount against Pakistan following the announcement of the US’s new war strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia. The US President Donald Trump sharply criticized Pakistan over its role in the campaign against militancy.
Analysts have said Pakistan is now trying to mend its ties with Afghanistan so that it can ease the pressure.
“These trilateral or multipartite meetings did not yield an outcome for Afghanistan; I hope that this time the Afghan government pursues more conducive policies which are in favor of Afghanistan,” said MP Fawzia Kofi.
“I think Pakistan is trying to deceive Afghanistan and it is trying to show that Pakistan is alongside Afghanistan in the fight against terrorism,” said MP Fatima Aziz.
Meanwhile the ministry of defense spokesman Dawlat Waziri said: “Regarding this issue, teams have been formed on how to create the environment of trust between the two countries, but the important thing is that friendship with Pakistan is not only in our own interests, but also in the interests of Pakistan.”
Following Bajwa’s visit, Ghani said that the trip will open a new chapter of relationships between the two countries, adding that good opportunities of cooperation are being provided and that the two countries should try to resolve their issues.