- In United Nations Security Council meeting, Isaczai says both countries should establish joint monitoring and verification mechanism to make the fight against terrorism effective
Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the United Nations Ghulam M Isaczai has asked Pakistan to establish a joint monitoring and verification mechanism to make the fight against terrorism effective, adding that the country desires a peaceful co-existence based on mutual respect.
The Afghan ambassador shared his views during an open meeting of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on Afghanistan's security situation.
"Afghanistan desires nothing but friendly relations and peaceful co-existence with Pakistan based on mutual respect," he said.
The Security Council last met on Afghanistan in June, but the situation in the conflict-ridden country has rapidly worsened since then.
The Afghan Taliban control large swathes of the countryside and are now challenging government forces in several large cities, including Herat, near the western border with Iran, and Kandahar in the south.
Fighting has raged since May when the US and other foreign forces began the first stage of a troop withdrawal due to be completed later this month.
The Afghan and US troops have stepped up airstrikes against the insurgents, and the Taliban warned Wednesday that they would target senior government officials in retaliation.
On Friday, Taliban captured an Afghan provincial capital and assassinated the government's top media officer in Kabul, dealing twin high-profile blows to the Western-backed administration
Reiterating the fierce attacks, Afghanistan's Permanent Representative to the UN further said the Taliban's onslaught has caused further instability in Afghanistan. "It is our job to stop it," he told the UNSC.
While sharing information on the Taliban's attacks, he said that during the last few weeks, the Afghan Taliban have launched more than 5,000 attacks in 31 of the 34 provinces.
He said that the Afghan Taliban have gone against the Doha deal by not cutting ties with militant groups.
He urged the UNSC to act to "prevent a catastrophic situation” in Afghanistan.
"We're alarmed by reports and incidents of gross human rights violation by the Taliban and their foreign terrorist associates in almost half of our country and we are extremely concerned about the safety and security of people in cities under attack," he said.
Meanwhile, the UN special envoy for Afghanistan, Deborah Lyons, told the Security Council that the war in Afghanistan had entered a new, deadlier, and more destructive phase.
"A party that was genuinely committed to a negotiated settlement would not risk so many civilian casualties, because it would understand that the process of reconciliation will be more challenging the more blood is shed," Lyons said.
"The Security Council must issue an unambiguous statement that attacks against cities must stop now," Lyons added.
A day ago, the European Union called for a permanent ceasefire in Afghanistan. "The EU calls for an urgent, comprehensive and permanent ceasefire to give peace a chance. This senseless violence is inflicting immense suffering upon Afghan citizens and is increasing the number of internally displaced persons in search of safety and shelter," Borrell and Lenarcic stated.
Last month, Prime Minister Imran Khan had said that political reconciliation is the only solution to the Afghan conflict as the United States failed to seek a military solution to the issue.
In an interview aired on PBS NewsHour, Imran had said Pakistan desires peace in the region and cannot become part of the dispute. He said that there is no military solution to the Afghan issue. "I think the US has really messed it up in Afghanistan," he remarked.
He maintained that the US should have opted for a political settlement much earlier when there were as many as 150,000 troops in Afghanistan.
"But once they had reduced the troops to barely 10,000, and then when they gave an exit date the Taliban thought they had won. And so, therefore, it was very difficult for now to get them to compromise," he regretted.