Turkey, Pakistan agree to close coordination in Afghanistan


Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu discussed the latest situation in Afghanistan over the phone with his Pakistani counterpart Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Saturday. Çavuşoğlu thanked Qureshi for his support to Turkish citizens who wish to return to Turkey from Afghanistan, while the two ministers agreed to coordinate closely on the situation in Afghanistan.

Pakistan’s foreign ministry, in a statement, said foreign ministers exchanged views on bilateral relations and reviewed the latest Afghan situation, adding: “Qureshi said that the recent visit of President Arif Alvi in Turkey for the launching ceremony of MILGEM (anti-submarine patrol and warfare) Naval Ship further strengthened bilateral cooperation. “

“The two foreign ministers also recalled the recent telephone conversation between (Pakistani) Prime Minister Imran Khan and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan regarding developments in Afghanistan,” the statement said.

“Reiterating Pakistan’s support for a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan, Foreign Minister Qureshi stressed the importance of an inclusive political solution as the best way forward.

“The foreign minister added that Pakistan’s National Security Committee (NSC) has stressed the importance of peace and stability in Afghanistan for Pakistan and the region,” he added.

Qureshi “expressed hope that Afghan leaders would work together to achieve an inclusive political settlement.”

He also “added that the current situation in Afghanistan requires sustained international engagement to ensure long-term stability and economic development.”

“The two foreign ministers have agreed to coordinate closely on the situation in Afghanistan,” according to the statement from the Pakistani foreign ministry.

“I spoke to my brother FM @MevlutCavusoglu from Afghanistan. A peaceful and stable Afghanistan is of paramount importance to Pakistan and the region,” Qureshi also said on Twitter. “The main objective is to ensure the safety, security and protection of Afghan rights,” he noted, adding that forging an inclusive political settlement is the best way forward.

United States President Joe Biden ordered the United States military to withdraw from Afghanistan by September 11, 2021, the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attack on the United States by al-Qaida, supported by the Taliban.

The Taliban declared war on Afghanistan over after taking control of the presidential palace in Kabul, while Western countries rushed on Monday to evacuate their citizens amid chaos at Kabul Hamid Karzai International Airport as the frenzied Afghans were looking for a way out.

It took just over a week for the Taliban to take control of the country after a lightning strike that ended in Kabul as government forces, trained for years and equipped by the United States and others at the cost of billions of dollars have melted away.

The Taliban invaded Kabul on Sunday after President Ashraf Ghani fled the country, ending a two-decade campaign in which the United States and its allies had attempted to transform Afghanistan.

Stressing that new realities have emerged in Afghanistan, Ankara said it will move forward accordingly while keeping open communication with all relevant actors.

Turkey appreciates the Taliban’s moderate statements and their commitment not to revert to their previous hard-line rule, President Erdoğan said on Wednesday evening, adding that Turkey was still ready to protect Kabul airport after the Taliban takeover and talks to all parties involved.

Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu also said that Turkey will act in coordination with the international community in its position on the recognition of the new government in Afghanistan.

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