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Afghanistan's Foreign Minister in Vilnius: Afghanistan is ready to work with Pakistan

Ministras Pirmininkas Andrius Kubilius priėmė Afganistano užsienio reikalų ministrą Zalmai Rassoulą
BFL/Tomas Urbelionis / Afghanistan's Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul with Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius
Šaltinis: BNS
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Afghanistan is determined to work with the neighboring Pakistan to achieve peace and stability in the region, Afghanistan's Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul said at an international conference in Vilnius on Wednesday.

"Our relations with Pakistan are fundamental for peace and stability not only in Afghanistan but Pakistan and also in the whole region, in the world. We have been engaged very deeply with Pakistani government on discussing the fundamental issues because terrorism and extremism are not only hurting Afghanistan, they are hurting Pakistan too," Rassoul told journalists.

"It is time that we work together to find solution and cooperate together to find solution. We are deeply engaged in that and hope that we will see tangible results soon," the Afghan minister said at a joint news conference with his Lithuanian counterpart, Audronius Ažubalis.

Due to political and economic connections and fighters based in the border region, Pakistan is one of the key countries to determine stability in Afghanistan after the majority of foreign troops leave the country in 2014.

Afghan officials have accused Islamabad of supporting the Pakistan-based fighters, who perform attacks against Afghan and NATO forces. Pakistan has rejected the accusations.

The European Union's (EU) ambassador to Afghanistan, Vygaudas Ušackas of Lithuania, said at the conference that neighbors including Pakistan and Iran were getting better at understanding the importance of achieving peace and stability in Afghanistan, warming that a fast breakthrough in cooperation should not be expected.

"We should be under no illusion that regional engagement will remain a challenging subject. All too often we have perceived a large gap between rhetoric and reality here," Ušackas said.

Vilnius is hosting an international conference 'Afghanistan and the Region: Practical Approach for Sustainable Development' focusing on the importance of political and economic cooperation between Afghanistan and its neighbors, the creation of regional networks and the role of regional cooperation in boosting economic development of Afghanistan and the neighboring countries.

BNS
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