High-level Afghan delegation will visit Pakistan tomorrow

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By Webdesk

Afghan Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi addresses the media in this undated image.  — Reuters/File
Acting Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Amir Khan Muttaqi addresses the media in this undated image. — Reuters/File
  • The Afghan FM Muttaqi will lead the delegation from 5 to 8 May.
  • It comes after the Pakistani delegation visited Kabul last month.
  • Muttaqi will participate in the dialogue of foreign ministers on May 6.

Acting Afghan Foreign Minister Mawlawi Amir Khan Muttaqi will lead a high-level delegation to Pakistan tomorrow (Friday), the foreign ministry said on Thursday.

The delegation will remain in Pakistan from May 5 to 8, the foreign ministry said in a statement, and the visit comes nearly a month after a high-level delegation from Islamabad visited Kabul.

The delegation in Kabul will consist of acting Afghan Minister of Trade and Industry, Haji Nooruddin Azizi, and senior officials from the Afghan ministries of Foreign Affairs, Transport and Trade.

In addition to holding bilateral meetings, the acting Afghan foreign minister will also participate in the 5th Trilateral Foreign Ministerial Dialogue between China, Pakistan and Afghanistan on May 6.

State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China Qin Gang will also participate in the trilateral dialogue of foreign ministers.

“The visit of the acting Afghan foreign minister is a continuation of the process of Pakistani political engagement in Afghanistan, which included a visit by the Pakistani foreign minister to Kabul on 29 November 2022 and a visit by a delegation to high level led by the Defense Minister of Pakistan to Kabul on February 22, 2023,” the FO said.

During the visit, the two sides will review the entire spectrum of bilateral relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan in the fields of politics, economics, trade, connectivity, peace and security, and education.

The State Department said Pakistan’s longing for a peaceful, prosperous, stable and connected Afghanistan and reiterated its commitment to pursue continued and practical cooperation with the interim Afghan government.

The development comes after a United Nations Security Council committee agreed to allow the meeting of the foreign minister of the Taliban government with the foreign ministers and diplomats of Pakistan and China.

The Afghan minister has long been given a travel ban, an arms embargo and an asset freeze following UN Security Council sanctions.

According to a letter to the Security Council’s 15-member Taliban Sanctions Committee, the Pakistani UN mission has requested an exemption for Muttaqi to travel “to meet with the foreign ministers of Pakistan and China” between May 6 and 9.

Afghanistan forms a major geographic trade and transit route between South and Central Asia and has billions of dollars in untapped mineral resources. The Taliban seized power in August 2021 as US-led forces withdrew after 20 years of war.

The Security Council committee last month allowed Muttaqi to travel to Uzbekistan for a meeting of the foreign ministers of Afghanistan’s neighbors to discuss pressing peace, security and stability issues.

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