After winning over Iran, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif on Tuesday successfully managed to convince the Turkish leaders that a politically-negotiated settlement was the only solution to the Afghan conflict.
Asif’s visit to Ankara is part of his regional tour to garner support for Pakistan in the backdrop of US President Donald Trump’s new strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia.
During the foreign minister’s call on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, they agreed that Pakistan and Turkey would continue to work together for peace and stability in Afghanistan.
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Asif reaffirmed Pakistan’s strong desire for further strengthening strategic partnership between the two countries through increased cooperation in political, economic, defence and people-to-people ties.
Erdogan reiterated Turkey’s unflinching commitment to broaden and expand brotherly relations between the two countries. They agreed on maintaining regular high-level exchanges between the two countries.
Earlier, the foreign minister also called on Turkish Prime Minister Benali Yildrim.
Discussing bilateral relations, the two leaders expressed satisfaction at the remarkable progress being made in deepening the strategic partnership.
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In this regard, recalling the important work done under the High Level Strategic Cooperation Council under the leadership of the two prime ministers, they resolved to take measures to impart further impetus to this bilateral strategic forum.
Later during the day, the foreign minister and his Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu held bilateral talks covering all areas of mutual cooperation and coordination on peace and security in the region with particular focus on Afghanistan in the light of recent developments.
They agreed that there was no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan and reiterated that Afghanistan’s neighbours and regional countries needed to work together for facilitating a politically negotiated settlement under an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.
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During these meetings, the two sides shared concern over human rights violations in Indian Occupied Kashmir. The foreign minister thanked Turkey for its principled support to the just struggle of the Kashmiri people for their right to self-determination.
The Turkish leaders and Asif also expressed deep concern over the atrocities being committed against Rohingyas and while appreciating Turkey’s leadership on the issue, they stressed upon the international community for enhancing humanitarian efforts to alleviate their suffering.
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