Afghanistan rejects Pakistan Foreign Ministry claims about progress in counter terrorism bilateral talks

Afghanistan rejects Pakistan Foreign Ministry claims about progress in counter terrorism bilateral talks
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KABUL - Afghanistan has rejected the claims made from the Pakistan side over the breakthrough in the bilateral talks with the Afghanistan over the issue of the cross border terrorism.

Afghanistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) on Saturday announced in a statement that no progress has been achieved in the Afghan delegation visit to Pakistan.

“A high-level Afghan delegation comprising of senior civilian and military officials led by Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai visited Islamabad on the 9th and 10th of February 2018 to continue discussions with their Pakistani counterparts led by Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua on Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS),” the statement said.

“While some progress was made on the mechanism of cooperation, no progress was achieved on specific, results-oriented, time-bound measures in the APAPPS, particularly in the areas of counter terrorism, reduction of violence, peace and reconciliation to meet the priorities of Afghanistan ,” it said.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry has said that the Afghan and Pakistani officials had “good discussions” after they concluded two-day talks on important issues.

The talks in Islamabad took place under the APAPPS, a joint action plan for cooperation in the key areas of counter-terrorism and reduction of violence, peace and reconciliation, refugees’ repatriation and joint economic development.

This was the second round of APAPPS in a week that reflects determination of both sides to pursue a policy of engagement despite differences over certain issues.

The first round was held in Kabul on February 3, following deadly Taliban-claimed attacks in Kabul on January 20 and January 27, which killed nearly 150 people and injured hundreds more.

Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mohammad Faisal seemed upbeat at the discussions. “Pak-Afghanistan talks. Two days of good discussions. Some agreements. Further work required,” he wrote on Twitter.

However, the Afghan Foreign Ministry said no progress was made on counter-terrorism issues.

Foreign Policy