Pakistan today expressed support for peace efforts in Afghanistan, hours after the Taliban announced its first ceasefire in the war-torn country in nearly 17 years. On Thursday, Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani offered a temporary ceasefire with the Taliban for Eid. It is the first time since the 2001 US invasion that the Taliban militants have declared a ceasefire in Afghanistan.
The Foreign Office (FO) issued a statement after the Taliban announced temporary ceasefire for days around Eid. “Pakistan wishes to reiterate its support of recent peace initiatives in Afghanistan. We particularly support all Afghan-owned and Afghan-led efforts aimed at bringing peace and stability to Afghanistan,” it said.
US Foreign Secretary Mike Pompeo called Pakistan army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and discussed the Afghan issue.
Meanwhile, the army said that it has nothing to do with the brief abduction of rights activist Gul Bukhari, 52, a dual Pakistan-British national, who was kidnapped by unknown men on Tuesday night in Lahore while she was going to participate in a TV show and released early Wednesday.
Nobody claimed the kidnapping and Bukhari did not accuse anyone after her release. “We have nothing to do with it. I think this incident should be investigated thoroughly,” army spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor said.