Terror groups continue to have safe havens in Pakistan : Afghan Foreign Minister

03/22/2017

WASHINGTON, Mar. 22:  Terror groups continue to have safe havens in Pakistan and its establishment provides unhindered support to terrorists, Afghanistan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani said on Tuesday, slamming Pakistan for being the destabilising factor in his war-torn country.

Noting that the Ghani government, soon after coming to power, tried to open a new chapter of relationship with Islamabad, Mr Rabbani told a Washington audience: "Unfortunately, we did not see practical steps taken by Pakistan on the promises they made."

Mr Rabbani, who is currently visiting the city to attend the US-sponsored anti-coalition group meeting, urged the Trump Administration to put pressure on Pakistan to stop using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

 

"This has to stop," he said in response to a question, adding that he expects the same from China, a good friend of Pakistan.

"A paradigm shift in Pakistan is needed to bring Taliban on the peace table," Rabbani said, as he praised the role of India for the all-round development of Afghanistan.

Referring to the series of recent attacks in Kabul and Kandahar, the Foreign Minister said these proves that Taliban does not want to come to the peace table.

 
 


"Pakistan should see Afghanistan as a sovereign and independent country. It is not a subservient to anyone," he said.

"India has been a country that has supported Afghanistan for 15 years. It has been busy building schools, colleges, hospitals, roads and bridges. While others have chosen to destroy them they (India) have chosen to build them. We value that," Mr Rabbani said.

Pakistan's reluctance to end its support to terrorism undermines efforts to insure peace and security in the country, he alleged.

"Now, we have stopped asking Pakistan to deliver Taliban to peace table. We want Pakistan to take action against the Taliban leadership. They should not support violence in Afghanistan," he said.

"I do not see any policy change in Pakistan in the coming days," he said, attributing this to the increasing insecurity in the powerful Pak military.(PTI)

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