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Sunday Sep 05 2021
By
Web Desk

PM Imran Khan, Saudi crown prince agree world must 'step up engagement' with Afghans: PM Office

By
Web Desk
Prime Minister Imran Khan with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud at the 14th Islamic Summit in Makkah, 2019. — Twitter/Govt of Pakistan
Prime Minister Imran Khan with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud at the 14th Islamic Summit in Makkah, 2019. — Twitter/Govt of Pakistan

Prime Minister Imran Khan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in a telephonic conversation on Sunday agreed that the international community must "step up its engagement" with Afghanistan to avert any humanitarian and refugee crisis, a statement from the Prime Minister Office said.

According to the statement: "Both the leaders agreed on the importance of an inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan." 

It said that the two leaders had a "detailed discussion on the latest situation in Afghanistan".

The prime minister, during the conversation with the Saudi crown prince — who is also deputy prime minister and defence minister — stressed that the international community "had the responsibility to stand by the Afghan people and support them economically as well as to help rebuild the country," read the statement.

The prime minister underscored that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan is vital for not only Pakistan but for regional stability.

The premier emphasised the need to address the urgent humanitarian needs of Afghans and take steps to ensure economic stability of Afghanistan, the statement added.

Among other things discussed was the Middle East Green Initiative (MGI), scheduled in Riyadh in October this year.

According to the PM Office statement, recalling the two historic initiatives recently announced by the crown prince to tackle the adverse impacts of climate change and environmental degradation, the prime minister thanked him for an invitation to participate in the launch ceremony of the initiative.

The prime minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s desire to further fortify the historic fraternal ties with Saudi Arabia and reaffirmed Pakistan’s support for the Kingdom’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, said the statement.

He conveyed warm wishes for the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz, it added.

The premier and the Saudi crown prince "agreed to work together to further augment and diversify bilateral ties in all spheres", the PM Office further said.

UAE crown prince, PM discuss latest Afghan situation

The prime minister had a separate conversation with UAE Crown Prince  Mohamed Bin Zayed, where the two "exchanged views on the issues of bilateral interest as well as regional developments, in particular the latest situation in Afghanistan", the PM Office said, in a statement.

The prime minister "reaffirmed the importance Pakistan attaches to its strong fraternal ties with UAE and close cooperation between Pakistan and UAE".

On the latest situation in Afghanistan, the prime minister "underscored that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan was in vital interest of Pakistan and the region".

According to the statement, he underlined that an inclusive political settlement was "the best way forward to ensure safety and security as well protection of the rights of the people of Afghanistan".

Prime Minister Imran Khan stressed that the world community must remain engaged, in order to support the Afghan people, economically and to help rebuild the country. He emphasized the need to address the dire humanitarian needs and to ensure economic stability of Afghanistan.

PM Imran Khan congratulated the crown prince for making excellent arrangements for the upcoming Expo 2020. He conveyed his best wishes for the resounding success of the mega event, the statement said.

He and the crown prince "agreed to work together to enhance collaboration in all areas of common interest", the statement added.

Qatar emir, PM discuss evolving Afghan situation

The prime minister also spoke to Qatar's emir, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, with the two leaders discussing bilateral relations and their views on the evolving situation in Afghanistan.

"The prime minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s desire to further strengthen political and economic partnership with Qatar," the PM Office said in a statement.

According to the statement, the premier appreciated Qatar’s assistance to Pakistan during the pandemic, in particular the care afforded to more than 200,000 Pakistani expatriates working for progress and development of both countries.

The prime minister underscored that a peaceful and stable Afghanistan was in vital interest of Pakistan and the region. He underlined that after 40 years of conflict and instability, there was an opportunity to establish lasting peace in Afghanistan, the statement said.

PM Imran Khan emphasised that the world community "must remain positively engaged and support the Afghan people at this crucial juncture – both economically and to help rebuild the country". This, he stressed, was "crucial to avert humanitarian and refugee crises in the country".

"The two leaders agreed to remain in close contact on bilateral matters as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest," the PM Office added.