Islamabad, Jan 25 (PTI) Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said on Monday that his country considers the intra-Afghan talks as a rare opportunity for lasting peace in Afghanistan as he stressed that the success of intra-Afghan dialogue is essential for peace and stability in the region.
Speaking to his Afghan counterpart Muhammad Hanif Atmar over telephone, Foreign Minister Qureshi also highlighted Pakistan's policy to strengthen trade between the two countries, the Foreign Office said.
He underlined that the Intra-Afghan Negotiations provided an historic opportunity for the Afghan leadership to achieve an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement in Afghanistan.
The minister expressed concern on the high level of violence in Afghanistan and emphasised progress in the intra-Afghan talks which would also facilitate reduction in violence, leading to a ceasefire.
He said that the talks provided a window of opportunity for return of lasting peace in Afghanistan and Pakistan would continue to play its positive role towards supporting the Afghan Peace Process and strengthening bilateral relations with Afghanistan.
Qureshi also raised the issue of Pakistani prisoners who had been languishing in Afghan jails over minor crimes. He expressed the hope that prisoners would be released as per the Presidential decree, providing them an opportunity to return back to their families.
The foreign minister also drew attention of his Afghan counterpart towards the proposed establishment of Border Sustenance Markets, the Foreign Office said.
Qureshi underlined that it was a special initiative of the Prime Minister Imran Khan to boost local trade and economic activity in the border regions and 'hoped for the earliest finalization of the MoU'. PTI SH ZH ZH