Sartaj Aziz, Afghan FM to meet in Tashkent over border management

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ISLAMABAD, June 20 (APP): Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Salahuddin Rabbani would meet in Tashkent on the sidelines of the SCO Summit on June 23-24 to discuss the issues relating to border management.

According to a Foreign Office statement, it was agreed during the  talks between the delegations of Pakistan and Afghanistan held  here Monday. Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai led the Afghan delegation while Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry headed the Pakistani delegation.

The Afghan delegation arrived here following a telephonic conversation of Sartaj Aziz, Adviser on Foreign Affairs with Afghan National Security Adviser Hanif Atmar on June 15, 2016 to address the situation arising from recent events at the Torkham border crossing and to find a way forward on efforts towards better border management.

The Foreign Office said the talks between the two delegations were held in a cordial atmosphere marked by a mutual desire to amicably resolve border related issues.

Both sides decided to work in the spirit of good neighbourly relations and friendly cooperation between the two countries.

“The two sides agreed that the ideas generated in today’s deliberations will be shared with the leadership and will be further refined during a meeting between the Adviser and the Afghan Foreign Minister on the sidelines of the forthcoming SCO Summit in Tashkent on 23-24 June 2016.”

During the discussions, it was emphasized that there was a need for creating a suitable mechanism for consultation on border management issues.

Effective border management is vital for promoting peace, countering terrorism and strengthening relations between the two countries.

The Afghan Deputy Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai also paid a courtesy call on Sartaj Aziz.