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Defining moment for Afghanistan, talks for inclusive govt started

DUSHAHANBE: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday that he has initiated a dialogue with the Taliban for the formation of an inclusive government in Afghanistan representing multiple ethnic groups.

The statement by the premier came in a tweet after the conclusion of the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Council of Heads of State (SCO-CHS) Summit, where regional leaders, including PM Imran, met to discuss the situation in Afghanistan following the US withdrawal from the war-torn country.

“After meetings in Dushanbe with leaders of Afghanistan’s neighbours and especially a lengthy discussion with Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon, I have initiated a dialogue with the Taliban for an inclusive Afghan government to include Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks,” he tweeted.

In a subsequent tweet, he added: “After 40 years of conflict, this inclusivity will ensure peace and a stable Afghanistan, which is in the interest not only of Afghanistan but the region as well.”

The prime minister had reiterated the same during his address at the SCO-CHS summit on Friday.”The Taliban must fulfil the pledges made, above all for an inclusive political structure where all ethnic groups are represented. This is vital for Afghanistan’s stability,” he had said, adding that it was also important to ensure respect for the rights of all Afghans while making certain that the country will never again be made a safe haven for terrorists.

Joint press conference

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday stressed that the establishment of an inclusive government with all ethnic groups on board was a must to achieve sustainable peace and stability in Afghanistan, which was passing through a defining moment.

“Peace and stability in Afghanistan are not only important for Pakistan and Tajikistan but also for the whole region,” Imran Khan said while addressing a joint press conference along with President Emomali Rahmon here after holding one-on-one meeting and delegation level talks.

DUSHANBE: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Tajikistan’s President Emamoli Rahmon addressing a joint press conference at Qasr-e-Millat on Friday.

The Prime Minister said besides having wide-ranging talks to strengthen bilateral cooperation in diverse areas, they discussed the most important issue of the situation in Afghanistan.

He said that peace and stability in Afghanistan was very important especially for Afghan people, who were suffering for the last 40 years.

The Prime Minister said that he and President Rahmon discussed how they could ensure peace and stability in Afghanistan.

He described the situation of conflict between Tajiks and Taliban in Panjshir as “worrying” and said that the two countries agreed to try their best to resolve the issue through dialogue.

DUSHANBE: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, India’s Foreign Minister Jaishankar join regional leaders at SCO summit, held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

The Prime Minister said that as Afghanistan comprised of various ethnic communities including 45 percent Pashtuns as well as Tajiks, Uzbeks, Hazaras, “We urge for inclusive government”.

Prime Minister Imran Khan, however, added that they cannot dictate Afghanistan but urge them as friends to resolve the {Panjshir} issue through dialogue and also open the blockade for humanitarian aid.

He said that the situation in Afghanistan had two ways with one leading to peace or it can to a nightmare scenario of conflict, humanitarian crisis and instability.

DUSHANBE: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Tajikistan’s President Emamoli Rahmon discussing issues of mutual concern at Qasr-e-Millat on Friday.

The Prime Minister said that three terrorist groups have been using Afghan soil to launch terrorist attacks in Pakistan, adding, stability in Afghanistan was in everyone’s interest.

About bilateral relations between Pakistan and Tajikistan, Imran Khan said the two sides held wide-ranging talks for strengthening cooperation in diverse fields including trade and connectivity besides discussing ways and means to enhance bilateral trade of goods including textile, pharmaceutical etc.

The Prime Minister congratulated President Emomali Rahmon for successfully hosting 20th meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Council of Heads of States.

He also thanked the President of Tajikistan for the warm welcome and hospitality extended to the Pakistan delegation during the visit.

The Prime Minister said that he and his delegation were impressed with the development achieved by Tajikistan.

DUSHANBE: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Tajikistan’s President Emamoli Rahmon at Qasr-e-Millat on Friday.

“We have seen the development, buildings and greenery. I think you [Tajik President] have a passion for development. We are impressed,” he remarked.

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan and President Emomali Rahmon witnessed the signing of various documents and Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) for increased cooperation between Pakistan and Tajikistan in the areas of industry, tourism, hospitality, investment, information and broadcasting, physical training and sports, intelligence sharing to check money laundering and avoidance of double taxation.

Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mamhmood Qurehi, Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood and Pakistan’s Ambassador in Tajikistan Imran Haider and their counterparts signed the MOUs on behalf of their respective sides.

Pakistan, Tajikistan agree to upgrade ties 

Pakistan and Tajikistan, building on the previous understandings and given the strong desire of two countries to further promote mutual cooperation in diverse areas, have decided to upgrade the bilateral relations to the level of a long-term strategic partnership.

The decision was taken during the two-day (September 15-17) official visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Tajikistan on the invitation of President Emomali Rahmon.

According to a joint statement issued at the conclusion of Imran Khan’s visit, the two leaders had wide-ranging deliberations covering all aspects of the mutually beneficial bilateral cooperation, and regional and international issues of common interest during the tete-a-tete and delegation-level talks.

 Prime Minister Imran Khan also participated in the Jubilee Summit of the Council of Heads of State of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) besides his official visit.

He commended President Emomali Rahmon for hosting the Jubilee Summit of the Council of Heads of State of SCO and other events in Dushanbe during the SCO Chairmanship of Republic of Tajikistan.

Both leaders agreed to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and Tajikistan in 2022 in a befitting manner.

The two leaders expressed satisfaction over the growing mutually beneficial political, trade, economic, scientific, technical, and cultural cooperation between the two countries.

They underscored the importance of following Joint Statement/Declarations signed earlier: Joint Statement “Towards Strategic Partnership for Regional Solidarity” between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan signed on 5 July 2017; the Joint Declaration “Strengthening the Pathway to Strategic Partnership for Regional Solidarity” between the Republic of Tajikistan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan signed on 19 June 2018; and the Joint Declaration on “Next Steps to Build Strategic Partnership for Regional Solidarity and Integration” of 2 June 2021.