UNITED NATIONS, Sept 21 (APP): Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Wednesday said Pakistan had long proposed that the most viable course to end decades of conflict and sufferings in Afghanistan was dialogue.
Addressing the 71st Session of the United Nations General
Assembly, he said after 15 years of the current war in Afghanistan, the international community agreed that the only road to a lasting peace in that country was through a dialogue between the Government in Kabul and the Afghan Taliban.
Based on this belief in a negotiated peace, and in response
to requests from President Ashraf Ghani, the Prime Minister said Pakistan had been facilitating the process of reconciliation in Afghanistan.
He said there had been setbacks, however, it was not a
sufficient reason to abandon the path of peace and rely on the military option, which has failed, for the past decade and a half, to stabilize Afghanistan.
The Prime Minister said progress would be assured only when the Afghan parties themselves concluded that there was no military solution to the Afghan war, and work assiduously, through a meaningful dialogue process, for achieving reconciliation and peace at home.
Nawaz Sharif said over three and a half decades of conflict
and chaos in Afghanistan has had grave security and economic consequences for Pakistan.
“Almost three million Afghan refugees, to whom we opened our homes and hearts, remain in Pakistan,” the Prime Minister said and expressed the hope to see them return to Afghanistan, voluntarily and with dignity.
“Until they do, the international community must shoulder its
responsibilities to sustain them,” he added.