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PM reiterates Pakistan’s support to Afghan Peace Process

DOHA: While talking to Emir of Qatar Tamim-bin-Hamad Al-Thani, during his day-long visit here, PM Imran Khan appreciated Qatar’s valuable role in the US-Taliban peace agreement, to be signed tomorrow (Saturday (February 29, 2020).

He reiterated Pakistan’s continued support for an Afghan-owned and Afghan-led peace process. PM Khan and  the host expressed the hope that all Afghan stakeholders would seize this historic opportunity to reach an inclusive political settlement for establishment of durable peace and stability in Afghanistan.

The Prime Minister also informed the Emir of Qatar about continuing grave human rights violations in IoK.

Imran Khan reaches Qatar, meets the Emir

27th of February, 2020

Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has arrived here on a day-long visit, was received by  Qatar’s Energy Minister Saad Sheirda Al-Kaabi at the airport.

PM met the  Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim Bin Hammad Al-Thani.and his Qatari counterpart to discuss issues of mutual interest.

He is accompanied by Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfikar Bukhari and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Petroleum Nadeem Babar

The focus of the visit will be on strengthening bilateral cooperation and exchanging views on regional developments.

Pak FM invited by Qatar for signing of US-Taliban deal

25th of February, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Qatar has extended an invitation to Pakistani FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi to attend the signing ceremony of US-Afghan Taliban peace deal here on 29th of February (2020).

According to details the Qatar Envoy to Pakistan Saqr bin Mubarak Al-Mansouri extended the invite to Shah Mehmood Qureshi during a rendezvous at the Foreign Office in Islamabad.

It is pertinent to mention here that the peace deal between USA and the Afghan Taliban is the result of fourteen month long process that was brokered by Pakistan at Trump administration’s request.

It is widely believed that the deal will lead to a permanent ceasefire in the region.

Pakistan helped in making road-map for Afghan peace: FM

23rd of February, 2020

ISLAMABAD: FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi has stated Pakistan (that had helped in constructing a roadmap) was closely involved in the process that led to the announcement of the upcoming US-Afghan peace deal.

Calling the announcement of the peace deal a historic breakthrough, FM held:  “When US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad visited Islamabad recently, both the prime minister and I held detailed meetings with him regarding the peace process. We constructed a roadmap to peace…

“I also told Khalilzad that the US and its allies around the region must remain wary of certain elements who benefit from continued fighting [in Afghanistan]. I warned him that these elements are bent on destroying the progress of our peace efforts.” 

UN SG says Pakistan needs world support in hosting Afghan refugees!

ISLAMABAD: Addressing a joint News Conference with FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi here today, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres asked the global community to assist Pakistan in the cause of hosting millions of Afghan refugees.

Maintaining that Afghan-owned peace process was the only solution of the prevailing issue Secretary General lauded Pakistani generosity by allowing Afghans enter their country. He said commitment of Pakistan for Afghan peace had encouraged him. Focusing on Kashmir issue, he said UN Security Council resolutions and human rights must be respected.

Pakistan’s FM, speaking about Afghan peace at the Presser, noted that collective efforts would have to be made for durable peace. He noted that the two countries were dependent on each other. Stressing on the intra-Afghan dialogue he said that the people had to play the key role.

UN Secretary-General to arrive in Pakistan today

16th of February, 2020

ISLAMABAD: UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres is arriving here today (Sunday 16 Feb. 2020) to attend International Conference on Afghan refugees.

According to details Pakistan and UN Refugee Agency will be holding a two-day conference  40 years of Afghan Refugees Presence in Pakistan: A New Partnership for Solidarity here on 17th and 18th of February that will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The Secretary-General will call on President Dr. Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan. A rendezvous with Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi is also on the cards.

UN Secretary General António Guterreswill meet parliamentarians, members of Media and the youth of this country. Special talks on themes of sustainable development, climate change and peacekeeping will be delivered by him.

António Guterres will pay a visit to Lahore and travel to the Gurdwara Kartarpur Saheb.

Pakistan urges world to contribute in repatriation of Afghan refugees

April 29, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) Shehryar Khan Afridi urged the global community to play its due role in the process of repatriation of Afghan refugees to their homeland.

Addressing a briefing at the ministry of SAFRON, he said “it is an irony that Pakistan has been hosting around four million Afghan refugees for the past four decades but the world is not ready to share its burden.”

The minister said despite the recent financial crisis, Pakistan is putting up efforts to facilitate Afghan refugees.

In this regard, the government is working on ‘Refugee Policy’ which would be unveiled soon, he shared.

Afridi vowed during his speech that he would work with all organizations to help repatriate the Afghan refugees.

Meanwhile, he said the ministry of SAFRON would also play a proactive role in merger of tribal areas into Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and all pertaining issues would be addressed.

Earlier in February, Prime Minister Imran Khan had issued directives for the opening of bank accounts of the Afghan refugees, who are registered in the country.

Over 92,600 Afghan refugees return home in 2019: UN

KABUL: Over 92,600 Afghan refugees have returned from neighbors Pakistan and Iran since January, United Nations migration agency International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported Tuesday.

“About 92,698 Afghans returns from Iran and Pakistan since 01 January 2019,” said IOM in a statement.

A total of 88,516 Afghans have reportedly returned their homeland from Iran as the value of local currency had fallen and job opportunities are low.

Meanwhile, 4,182 Afghans have come back home from Pakistan during the period, said the statement.

“The above update is based on 64,186 interviews from 390 out of 399 districts in all 34 provinces of Afghanistan,” the statement said.

More than 849,000 Afghan refugees had returned or been deported to Afghanistan in 2018 mainly from neighbor countries, according to figures from Afghan Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations.

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M M Alam

M. M. Alam is a Pakistan-based working journalist since 1981. Karachi University faculty gold medalist Alam began his career four decades ago by writing for Dawn, Pakistan’s highest circulating English daily. He has worked for region’s leading publications, global aviation periodicals including Rotors (of USA) and vetted New York Times as permanent employee of daily Express Tribune. Alam regularly covers international aviation and defense-related events including Salon Du Bourget (France), Farnborough (United Kingdom), Dubai (UAE). Alam has reported thousands of events and interviewed hundreds of people in Pakistan, UAE, EU, UK and USA. Being Francophone Alam also coordinates with a number of French publications.