Political settlement is imperative for Afghan conflict: FO

Pakistan believes that Afghan-owned and Afghan-led political settlement is imperative for restoring long-lasting peace in the war-torn country. The Foreign Office Spokesperson, Nafees Zakaria during the weekly press briefing here Thursday said Pakistan was keen to see durable and lasting peace in Afghanistan. While rejecting the military solution to Afghan conflict, he said the country has been in war like situation for the last 40 years, adding that Pakistan has suffered tremendously due to the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan. Pakistan would benefit more from peaceful Afghanistan than any other country, however, the blame game of Afghanistan would not serve any purpose. Replying to a question, the spokesperson said the longstanding conflicts in Afghanistan have given space to non-state actors. He said the growing presence of Daesh terrorist group was an issue of grave concern for many regional countries, which is also a major threat to the Afghan peace process. China and Pakistan are making concerted efforts for restoring peace in Afghanistan, he added. He said once peace returns to Afghanistan, the displaced Afghani people will go back to their home-country for living there in a peaceful environment. He, however, said the internal weaknesses of Afghanistan should not be blamed on others. Regarding the sideline meeting of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and the Russian President Vladimir Putin during the SCO summit, the spokesperson said an immense potential exists in the field of education, culture, trade, and defense for further boosting the bilateral relations between the two countries. He said, We welcome Vladimir Putin’s visit to Pakistan. The spokesperson said the Indian occupation forces in Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK) while showing complete disrespect to the holy month of Ramazan, martyred more than 25 Kashmiris, including children and injured over 200, mostly students, using pellet guns. He said hundreds of children have been blinded � completely or partially � during this past year alone. He said Pakistan’s offer to get their eyes treated in any country in Europe still holds, adding We have broached this issue with UN HR officials in Geneva. Pakistan has also effectively taken up violations of Kashmiris’ rights and Indian atrocities in IoK at the ongoing 35th session of Human Rights Council in Geneva, he added. Nafees Zakaria said, As we speak today, Indian occupation forces may be brutally beating up Kashmiris for celebrating Pakistan cricket team’s win in semi-final as they did when Pakistan won on 12 June at Cardiff. He said the occupation forces broke into shops and looted goods to punish Kashmiris for celebrating Pakistan’s victory.

Source: Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage