Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif on Monday urged regional countries to reach a consensus that could lead to the best solution to the Afghanistan problem. Asif made the remarks in an interview with Iran’s official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA). “Basically my main purpose of the visit to Iran is to evolve some consensus amongst the neighbours of Afghanistan, because peace in Afghanistan will have a comprehensive effect on the rest of the region,” Asif said.
The Pakistani top diplomat said the US military approach in Afghanistan has already failed to address the problems in the country. “No need to say that the approach taken by the Americans which is a military one, has not been able to bring peace to Afghanistan 16 years,” he said. “It is very important for us, it is very important for the region that we evolve consensus over different problems.”
He said Pakistan believes that there can be no military solution to the Afghanistan problem, because a political solution is always a long-lasting one while a military solution will collapse soon. Asif said he reiterated on a political solution to the Afghanistan problem during his visit to China days ago. Asif said he will travel to Turkey on Tuesday to try his best to reach a regional consensus on Afghanistan. He added that he also plans to meet his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in the near future on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session to discuss the Afghanistan issue.
During his one-day visit to Tehran, Asif is expected to meet his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif and President Hassan Rouhani. In addition to the Afghanistan problem, the two sides will also discuss how to deal with the new U.S. policy for Afghanistan and South Asia and promote the bilateral ties.