Afghan-Pakistan leaders hold talks with British PM, vow cooperation

Monday, February 04, 2013
British Prime Minister David Cameron [Official File Photo]


London: Pakistani and Afghan leaders have pledged cooperation in their efforts to move toward regional stability in a trilateral summit hosted by Britain.

Speaking to journalists after the talks on February 4, British Prime Minister David Cameron noted that the three leaders shared a common vision for a future Afghanistan, which will be a "secure, stable, and democratic country that never again becomes a haven for international terrorism."

He said that the leaders endorsed an Afghan-led peace process and agreed to work toward a strategic partnership agreement between Afghanistan and Pakistan by autumn.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai expressed hope "that all that we discussed today and the subsequent agreements that we made will be put into action, to the satisfaction of all sides, and that the Taliban, as we call upon them, will take this opportunity to participate in the peace process."

His Pakistani counterpart, Asif Ali Zardari, agreed, saying: "Pakistan endorses the concept -- it's on the world peace agenda -- to have a dialogue with the Taliban. We will support it, we will help it, and hopefully come out of this war which has been very damaging to both our nations."

Kabul is pushing for a peace deal with Taliban militants ahead of the scheduled withdrawal of most foreign troops by the end of 2014.

It is the third meeting in the trilateral format.

Copyright (c) 2013. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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