US Defense Chief calls on int’l community to mediate for a political settlement in Afghanistan

01:05 PM | 10 Jul, 2021
US Defense Chief calls on int’l community to mediate for a political settlement in Afghanistan
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WASHINGTON – United States Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin Friday called on the international community to engage the Afghan government and insurgents for a negotiated settlement in the war-torn country.

Taking it to his official Twitter, Austin wrote that “The security situation in Afghanistan only argues more for international pressure to have a negotiated political settlement to end this conflict and give the Afghan people (the) government they want and they deserve.”

Soon after the speech of the US President, Austin urged the international community to end conflict saying “The entire world can help by continuing this push.”

However, the 67-year-old retired US Army four-star general did not specify the countries he was urging to help secure a settlement.

The call for help from the senior US official comes a day after President Biden announced that the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, after nearly two decades of war, would be completed by end of next month.

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On Wednesday, US State Department spox Ned Price stated that Pakistan and the United States have shared interests of peace and stability in Afghanistan.

“Pakistan has been a helpful and constructive partner when it comes to Afghanistan. The US administration is hopeful over collective efforts of the US and Pakistan to bring a semblance of peace and security here in Afghanistan” Price revealed saying that “Pak-US relations go far beyond the interests of regional security and counter-terrorism cooperation.”

Meanwhile, an Afghan government delegation met with Taliban representatives in Iran’s capital, hosted by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

The Afghan government and the Taliban have agreed that “war is not the solution to the Afghanistan problem” and that all efforts must be made to resolve all political issues peacefully.

According to a joint statement released after the talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban representatives in Tehran, the two sides agreed to continue talks on the mechanism of establishing an Islamic state at a later meeting.

On the other hand, Pakistan’s Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said that Pakistan is closely monitoring the situation after the US exit from Afghanistan and would not allow the use of its territory against anyone.

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