Qureshi apprises German FM on Afghan peace


ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi received Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas during his brief visit to Islamabad. Recalling his own recent visit to Berlin, Foreign Minister Qureshi expressed gratitude for the warm welcome accorded to him and appreciated the fruitful outcome of the visit.

Foreign Minister Qureshi underlined the importance of regular high-level exchanges between Pakistan and Germany and maintaining a steady upward trajectory in the relationship. The two Foreign Ministers reviewed bilateral cooperation and exchanged views on the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic. Foreign Minister Qureshi underscored the importance of enhancing mutual cooperation, and collaboration to combat the pandemic in a holistic manner. He thanked the German side for its efforts to ensure earliest possible provision of vaccine through the COVAX initiative.

Foreign Minister Qureshi apprised his German counterpart on Pakistan’s steadfast support for a peaceful and stable Afghanistan and positive contributions to the Afghan peace process. He underscored the importance of responsible withdrawal and steady progress by the Afghan parties towards a negotiated political settlement. He added that all efforts must be made for reduction of violence leading to ceasefire. The Foreign Minister stressed that the Afghan stakeholders must engage constructively to work out an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political solution, through an Afghan-owned and Afghan-led process. Cautioning against the role of ‘spoilers’, the Foreign Minister also underlined the importance of commitment and perseverance in the efforts for peace. The Foreign Minister underscored that peace in Afghanistan would yield other significant dividends including enhanced trade and regional connectivity.

The Foreign Minister also highlighted Pakistan’s shifting focus from geo-politics to geo-economics, within the perspective of economic security paradigm.

Pakistan and Germany enjoy cordial relations based on shared interests. The two Foreign Ministers have regularly been interacting bilaterally as well as at the international fora. The year 2021 marks the 70th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and Germany. A range of events are envisaged by the two governments to celebrate this milestone in a befitting manner.