Qureshi talks Afghan peace, M-E crisis with Qatari FM

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi

Islamabad,  Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi met his Qatari counterpart Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani in Doha and held talks on wide-ranging topics including the Afghan peace process and the ongoing Middle East tensions.

He arrived in Doha on Saturday after concluding his three-day visit to the US, reports The Express Tribune.

While appreciating Qureshi’s visit to Doha, Mohammed bin Abdulrahman acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts in facilitating Afghan peace process and promoting peace in the region.

The visit comes as the US and Taliban are expected to reach a withdrawal agreement by the end of January and are prepared to “scale down” military operations ahead of signing the deal.

During the meeting, Qureshi said the mediatory role of Islamabad in brokering peace in Afghanistan have been acknowledged by the international community and expressed hope that the decades-long conflict in the war-torn country was nearing its end.

The two leaders also emphasised the need to defuse ongoing tensions in the Middle East through diplomatic means, which escalated following the assassination of top Iranian commander General Qassem Soleimani in a US drone strike in Iraq on January 3.

Qureshi also briefed Mohammed bin Abdulrahman on his recent visit to Iran and Saudi Arabia where he urged all sides to exercise maximum restraint and avoid taking any further escalatory steps to defuse tensions in the region.