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ISLAMABAD: The United States Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, along with his delegations on Monday held discussions with Pakistan civil and military leadership amid crucial peace talks being held in Qatar among warring Afghans and Kabul administration.

A US delegation comprising senior civil and military leaders, led by Ambassador Khalilzad visited Pakistan and met with Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa at the general headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi.

According to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), matters of mutual interest, regional security and ongoing Afghan reconciliation process were discussed during the meeting.

It stated that the visiting dignitary greatly appreciated Pakistan's role in the ongoing peace process, and said 'it could not have succeeded without Pakistan's sincere and unconditional support".

"COAS said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has given clear vision regarding peace and connectivity in the region and all elements of national power are united towards making that vision a reality to ensure long awaited peace, progress and prosperity in the region," the ISPR quoted the army chief to have said during the meeting.

The video footage, released by the ISPR, shows that Pakistan Special Representative for Afghanistan Ambassador (retired) Mohammad Sadiq, Director General Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and other senior military officers were also present during the meeting.

The US Central Command, in a statement on Twitter stated: "We appreciate Pakistan's key role in the Afghan peace process. The start of inter-Afghan negotiation would not have been possible without Pakistan's sincere and unconditional support."

The ambassador who represented Pakistan in the opening ceremony of the intra-Afghan negotiations on September 12 in Doha has returned home after holding various meetings with Afghan leadership and Taliban leaders.

In Doha, the Special Representative for Afghanistan also met with chairman of Afghanistan's High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah, acting Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammed Hanif Atmar, and Kabul's chief negotiator to Intra-Afghan Negotiations Mohammed Masoom Stanekzai. Sadiq also held discussions with Taliban's chief negotiator Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar and other members of the Taliban Political Commission in Doha. About the meeting with chairman Afghanistan's High Council for National Reconciliation, a statement issued by Abdullah's office, stated that the chairman of high peace council thanked and appreciated Pakistan's support and positive role in reaching a permanent peace.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020