MULTAN: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Sunday said Pakistan wanted peace in Afghanistan, but some elements were against the peace process.

Those, who did not want peace in the region, would be exposed soon, he said while talking to media persons here after performing ground breaking of the extension of Surij Kund and another two roads.

Referring to the martyrdom of 10 army personnel in terror attacks in South Waziristan and Balochistan on Saturday, he paid tribute to the Jawans, who were sacrificing their lives to protect the country's frontiers and its people.

The brave soldiers proved that the Pakistan Army was one of the best armies in the world, he added.

Qureshi said normalcy had returned to the tribal areas and the incumbent government had earmarked huge amount for their development. For the first time, the provincial assembly elections were held in South Waziristan and other tribal districts, he added.

He said Prime Minister Imran Khan from day one was of the view that peace in Afghanistan could only be restored through talks. Today, the whole world, including the United States, Russia, China, the Middle East countries and the European Union had endorsed Pakistan's view, he added.

He said Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had some reservations on direct talks with the Taliban. However, now the dialogue process between the Taliban and the Afghan government was moving forward. War was not solution to the Afghan issue and that was why that those, who were against one another in the past, were now ready to sit together for talks, he added.

He congratulated the nation for the prime minister's successful visit to the US,  which he hoped, would improve relationships between the two countries.

He said Pakistan had made remarkable achievements on the diplomatic front during the past 11 months, which were even acknowledged by the whole world. Pakistan used to be asked by the US to “do more", but the foreign ministry made hectic efforts to bring a positive change in Washington, he added.

Responding to a question, he said Prime Minister Imran Khan had categorically stated in the Arena's public meeting that he was not in the US to seek financial assistance, rather to remove misunderstandings and improve relations.

About uplift work in the city, Qureshi said he performed the ground breaking of three road projects and a hospital at Walliatabad at a cost of Rs 1.41 billion.

Later, the minister laid foundation stone of Chowk Shah Abbas to Rangeelpur road. Speaking on the occasion, he said the area was deliberately kept backward in the past. The government was, however, committed to provide maximum resources for its uplift, he added.

He also promised to launch more projects in the city after Eid.

Punjab Minister for Energy Akhtar Malik, Multan Development Authority Chairman Rana Abdul Jabbar and others were also present.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2019