Trump’s offer to mediate is more than Pakistan expected: Qureshi

Pakistan wants Taliban to join Afghan electoral process

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ISLAMABAD

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Sunday said Pakistan was ready to extend all-out support to Afghanistan for achieving stability in the region and that Islamabad wanted the Taliban leaders to join the political process by taking part in the election.

Speaking to a local media outlet, Qureshi said the United States desired Pakistan’s role for an intra-Afghan dialogue for which the Prime Minister committed to play his role to convince the Taliban leadership.

He said the Prime Minister categorically stated that the notion of strategic depth is outdated as the country is ready to extend all-out assistant for Afghan peace.

He said Pakistan wants the ballot to replace the bullet in Afghanistan and also desires Taliban leaders to join the political process by taking part in elections.

On Kashmir, he said India’s adamant attitude on Kashmir issue will cost the country dearly as the situation in the occupied territory was deteriorating with every passing day.

He said the offer of mediation by US President Donald Trump during Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to Washington was more than Pakistan’s expectations.

He said the matter of US mediation on Kashmir was initiated by India, though the Modi regime is now backtracking from it following a hue and cry in his country’s political circles.

The foreign minister said Prime Minister Imran Khan made the US realized that Kashmir was a flash-point which required an early resolution.

He said the US president was informed that Pakistan is a peace-loving country and desires peace in the region, including with India.

Qureshi said Trump last week offered to be the “mediator” between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir issue during his first meeting with Prime Minister Imran at the White House.

India firmly rejected Trump’s offer, saying that New Delhi’s consistent position has been that all outstanding issues with Pakistan are discussed only bilaterally. Qureshi said that India’s “adamant attitude on Kashmir issue can cost it heavy” and claimed that the situation in the Valley is “deteriorating”.

He said the US President was informed that Pakistan is a peace loving country and desires peace in the region, including with India.

Talking to media in Multan on Sunday, FM Qureshi stated that whole international community including the United States, has unanimously accepted Pakistan’s narrative of peaceful solution to Afghan issue.

He said the United States had acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts in Afghan peace process as Prime Minister Imran Khan has successfully presented Islamabad’s narrative in a very appropriate manner. Foreign Minister paid rich tribute to the martyrs of terrorist attack on Balochistan and North Waziristan.

He said the development process in tribal districts has been started and a large amount of money earmarked in current budget for development in these areas. The Foreign Minister also announced three development projects for Multan.

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