Pakistan PM in Kabul for strategic talks (Lead)April 16th, 2011 - 6:45 pm ICT by IANS
Kabul, April 16 (IANS) Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani arrived here Saturday with a high-level delegation, including the army and ISI chiefs, to hold strategically important talks with the Afghan president Hamid Karzai.
Pakistan Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Inter-State-Intelligence(ISI) chief Ahmed Shuja Pasha, besides Minister for Defence Ahmed Mukthar, Minister for Interior Rehman Malik, Minister for Finance Adbul Hafeez Shaikh, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar and Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir are accompanying Gilani for the crucial meet.
The day-long visit has come in the wake of Karzai’s invitation to Gilani.
According to Pakistani newspaper The Nation, the US troops’ pullout plan, war against terrorism, border crossing, Afghan Taliban reconciliation, repatriation of Afghan refugees and Pakistan-Afghanistan transit trade agreement are expected to be discussed during the meeting.
“The purpose of the visit is to ensure that both the neighbouring countries are on the same page in tackling the bilateral challenges,” The Nation quoted a senior government official as saying.
The Pakistan prime minister is reportedly scheduled to meet Karzai at his presidential palace, where he would hold discussion on a host of issues, including bilateral relations and regional situation with specific reference to the situation after the withdrawal of foreign troops.
The two leaders are expected to make a joint address after their exclusive and delegation-level talks.
Earlier in the day, Gilani, on arrival at the Kabul International Airport, was received by Afghan Minister for Education Farooq Wardak, Pakistan’s Ambassador Muhammad Sadiq and senior officials, The Dawn quoted an APP report as saying.
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