The US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad on Thursday warned Pakistan to change its policy towards Afghanistan; otherwise, “Islamabad and Washington’s ties will not improve”.
Khalilzad made the remarks while talking to a number of youths from Bamiyan, Jawzjan and Parwan provinces in a video conference.
The US envoy said that in addition to a possible peace agreement, an agreement should be reached between Afghanistan and Pakistan based on which Pakistan should play a constructive role in Afghanistan.
“We support this and are seeking that an agreement should be reached between Afghanistan and Pakistan that can result in peace and (can stop) the interferences Pakistan has made in Afghanistan and I have been a witness of their (Pakistanis’) negative activities,” Khalilzad said. “Since I have taken on the role, I have encouraged them to play a more positive role, because if they want to improve their ties with the US, their policy toward Afghanistan must change, otherwise, the US and Pakistan relations will not improve,” Khalilzad said.
Khalilzad arrived in Kabul on Sunday and so far he has held meetings with Afghan politicians, civil society members, tribal elders, local officials, women and youths to exchange views on the peace process.
Khalilzad said the level violence will be decreased if a deal is reached between the Afghan government and the Taliban, but an end will not be put to the ongoing war because there are other insurgent groups like Daesh.
After talking with the youths, Khalilzad said in a tweet that he was asked tough questions about the peace talks.
“Always good to field tough questions from the next generation. Speaking with young people from Sheberghan, Bamiyan and Charikar, they made clear they want to be involved in the Afghan Peace Process, deserve security and are determined to build on the progress of the last 18 years,” Khalilzad said in a tweet.
Khalilzad had 16-day talks with the Taliban in Doha last month where they agreed in draft on some key issues under debate, including US forces withdrawal and counterterrorism assurances.
He said in a tweet that he will continue his meetings with Afghan leaders and politicians in Kabul.