KABUL: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Saturday that Pakistan has no favorites in Afghanistan rather the people of Afghanistan have to take decisions regarding their future.
The prime minister was addressing a joint news conference along with the Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul.
Sharif, who is on a day long visit to Kabul on the invitation of Afghan president as part of efforts to revive Afghanistan’s peace process before NATO troops withdraw next year, expressed satisfaction that both the countries are working together to make the neighborhood peaceful.
The prime minister made it clear that Islamabad desires a friendly and good neighborly relations with Afghanistan based on mutual trust‚ respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity.
“A peaceful‚ stable and united Afghanistan is in Pakistan’s vital interest,” the premier said.
Talking about the foreign troops’ withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014, the premier said that this is a major step towards making Afghan people master of their own fate.
However, he, emphasized that this major milestone will be accompanied by many challenges.
“It is in everybody’s interest that transition in Afghanistan is completed as peacefully as possible,” he said.
Sharif said that Pakistan has always supported an afghan-led and afghan-owned peace process, adding that inclusive political settlement will bring peace in Afghanistan.
The prime minister said that Pakistan has a vital stake in Afghanistan’s success in its journey towards peace and stability. He said that Islamabad will stand by Kabul in its every step.
The Pakistani premier urged all the stakeholders to seize the opportunity and join the peace efforts.
“It is time to take decisive steps in dialogue process to realize the objectives of peace and stability,” Nawaz Sharif said.
On cooperation in diverse sectors‚ Sharif said that we have agreed that there is huge potential of closer collaboration between the two countries in diverse sectors including trade‚ energy‚ infrastructure and communications.
“We have committed ourselves to trans-regional projects including CASA and TAPI gas pipeline projects,” the prime minister added.
On the occasion, Afghan President Hamid Karzai in his remarks said that terrorism poses threat to both Pakistan and Afghanistan and both the countries need to work together to curb it. He also expressed his desire to build strong economic relations with Pakistan.
Earlier, during a meeting both Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Afghan President Hamid Karzai agreed to further enhance cooperation to realize the objectives of peace‚ stability and prosperity in the region.