Minister of Foreign Affairs Salahuddin Rabbani said Thursday that separating Afghanistan’s security from that of Pakistan would be a miscalculation and a strategic mistake as the security of the two nations was interrelated.
The perception that Afghanistan’s security does not impact the security of Pakistan is a wrong evaluation, he said.
Speaking at a gathering at the Pakistan embassy in Kabul , Rabbani outlined the prospect of security in Afghanistan and said that the perception that Afghanistan’s security will not affect Pakistan is a wrong assessment, urging more inclusive and close cooperation between the two countries to fight threats.
In turn, Pakistan’s ambassador to Kabul Syed Abrar Hussain said that Islamabad is working on a wide range of programs aimed at bolstering ties with Afghanistan.
He said that no force will be able to undermine the determination of the two nations for reaching everlasting peace and security.
Ambassador Hussain said that Afghanistan and Pakistan are bound to a common future and called for further extended diplomatic, economic and security cooperation between the two neighbors to overcome challenges.
“We have inseparable mutual interests and shared objectives. There is a need to build a multiple prong and dynamic Pakistan-Afghanistan relationship which is befitting to our traditions and values, we want cooperation and not confrontation. Peace and stability in Afghanistan would ensure peace and stability in Pakistan, the region and the world,” said the Pakistani envoy to Kabul.
Rabbani expressed deep concerns over a surge in terror activities in Pakistan and other parts of the world by saying that terrorism and violent extremism are threatening regional and international security.
“Terrorism and violent extremism not only threatens us, but the entire region and the world. We must realize the fact that if today the terrorists are targeting a particular country, tomorrow they will target other people and countries. Let’s not go away from the fact, only a few days back on the eve of Pakistan Day, the terrorists targeted women, children and innocent civilians in Lahore and before that they (terrorists) targeted a public area in Turkey and killed the innocents and likewise Brussels and France,” Rabbani said.
Reacting to Sunday’s deadly suicide attack in the Pakistani city of Lahore that killed more than 70 people, Rabbani said that the two countries need to eliminate terrorists at their roots so as to avoid such incidents from happening again.
He reiterated calls to Pakistan to take steps and help Afghanistan with its security.
“We must believe in the fact that the security in Pakistan is not separate from the security in Afghanistan to avoid a strategic mistake. Security of the two countries is interrelated. If the security situation in one of the countries is unstable, this would impact the other country,” he said.
The gathering was also addressed by former Jihadi figure Sebghatollah Mujadedi.
“We consistently urged Pakistan to get control over the Taliban to prevent their activities. The Taliban will not be able to operate if Pakistan takes steps and honestly cooperates. If I am uttering these bitter words toward Pakistan, it is just because of interests of Pakistan,” Mujadedi said.
The statements come a few weeks after Pakistani officials pledged to facilitate face-to-face negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban, something which brought about renewed hope for the resumption of purposeful talks to end a fifteen-year Taliban insurgency in the war ravaged country.
But direct talks hit a deadlock after Taliban leaders refused to sit at the peace table unless Kabul government met the group’s preconditions.