Chinese, Afghan FMs in Pakistan to attend trilateral dialogue

FM Bilawal and his Chinese counterpart Gang will co-chair 4th round of Pakistan-China Strategic Dialogue

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Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang (left) and his Afghan counterpart Amir Khan Muttaqi. —AFP/ Twitter/@Ahmadmuttaqi01
Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang (left) and his Afghan counterpart Amir Khan Muttaqi. —AFP/ Twitter/@Ahmadmuttaqi01

  • The trilateral dialogues are scheduled to be held on May 6.
  • Muttaqi reaches Islamabad along political, trade delegations.
  • Kabul wants to hold talks on a wide range of matters.

ISLAMABAD: Chinese and Afghan foreign ministers — Qin Gang and Amir Khan Muttaqi — on Friday arrived in Pakistan to attend trilateral dialogues.

The Chinese foreign minister landed in Islamabad on his two-day maiden visit at the invitation of his Pakistani counterpart Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari.

Besides the bilateral meetings, the Chinese foreign minister will participate in the 5th China-Pakistan-Afghanistan Trilateral Foreign Ministers’ Dialogue scheduled to be held on Saturday.

FM Bilawal and his Chinese counterpart Gang will also co-chair the 4th round of the Pakistan-China Strategic Dialogue.

The strategic dialogue is a structured mechanism that reviews bilateral cooperation in key areas. The two sides will reaffirm the abiding vitality of the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership; develop a roadmap for multidimensional cooperation between Pakistan and China; and discuss the evolving regional and global landscape.

Meanwhile, Afghanistan’s acting Foreign Minister Muttaqi reached Islamabad on a four-day official visit to partake in the trilateral dialogue.

Taking to Twitter, Afghan Foreign Ministry Deputy Spokesman Hafiz Zia Takkal shared a video of Muttaqi, saying that a “comprehensive political and trade delegation” headed by the acting foreign minister has reached Islamabad.

He maintained that Kabul wanted to hold talks on a wide range of matters including, political, economic relations, regional security, and transit trade.

Besides attending the trilateral dialogue, the minister will also hold important meetings with the Pakistani authorities.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Afghan minister arrived in Pakistan almost a month after a high-level delegation from Islamabad visited Kabul.

A day earlier, the Foreign Office had said: "The visit of the acting Afghan foreign minister is a continuation of Pakistan's political engagement process with Afghanistan, which, inter alia, included visit of Pakistan’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs to Kabul on 29 November 2022 and visit of a high-level delegation led by the Defence Minister of Pakistan to Kabul on 22 February 2023."

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

The FO had said Pakistan is desirous of a peaceful, prosperous, stable and connected Afghanistan and reiterates its commitment to pursue continuous and practical engagement with the interim Afghan government.

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

The Afghan minister has long remained under a travel ban, arms embargo and asset freeze following sanctions by the UN Security Council.