Will take opposition into confidence on legislation: FM Qureshi

Foreign minister says Trump’s willingness to resume talks with Afghan Taliban

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COAS extension

MULTAN: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said on Saturday that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) government would legislate on the army chief’s extension by taking opposition parties on-board. Talking to media, he said the PTI government was waiting for a detailed judgment of the Supreme Court, adding that the government would move forward after taking opposition parties into confidence.

 

He hoped that the opposition would demonstrate responsibility and would cooperate with the incumbent government on legislation. Qureshi remarked that the PTI government always respected courts and it did not create any hindrance for them.

 

The foreign minister said that the government gave an extension to army chief within the ambit of law, however, the apex court identified some areas regarding extension in the service of army chief and the PTI government would make legislation to address the ambiguities.

 

The legislation would also facilitate future governments; Qureshi said and added that Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa was given an extension due to the security challenges being faced by Pakistan and in the best national interest.

 

The foreign minister observed that Pakistan was playing an important role in the Afghan peace process. About the occupied Kashmir issue, he observed that Pakistan had achieved numerous successes at the international level. He stated that the Kashmir issue had been taken up twice in US Congress and that the Congress was also questioning India about human rights violations in the occupied valley.

 

The issue had been internationalized after five decades; he said and added that a Kashmir Cell had also been set up at the foreign office. He urged the media to keep highlighting the issue of human rights violations in the occupied valley. Qureshi stated that media should be the voice of the innocent people of occupied Jammu and Kashmir. There is a complete blackout in the occupied valley, he said. The sit-in by JUI-F had damaged the Kashmir cause as the issue was not taken up properly by the media, he added.

 

Pakistan has welcomed The United States President Donald Trump’s continued willingness to pursue a political settlement in war-torn Afghanistan by resuming dialogue with Taliban. Taking to the social networking website, Twitter, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said, It is a positive development, which will help in establishing peace and stability in Afghanistan as well as in the region.

 

He further said that Pakistan will continue to facilitate Afghan peace and reconciliation process in close consultation with all stakeholders. The foreign minister said, all parties to the conflict are encouraged to engage constructively. Earlier on November 29, President Donald Trump had made a surprise Thanksgiving visit to US troops in Afghanistan and said he had believed Taliban would agree to a ceasefire in America’s longest war.

 

Trump’s visit was his first to Afghanistan since becoming president and came a week after a prisoner swap between Washington and Kabul that has raised hopes for a long elusive peace deal. The Taliban wants to make a deal and we are meeting with them, Donald Trump had told reporters after arriving in Afghanistan after an overnight flight from the United States, kept secret for security reasons.

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