Home / Diplomatic / Military escalation in Afghanistan will erode peace prospects: Maleeha

Military escalation in Afghanistan will erode peace prospects: Maleeha

NEW YORK: Pakistan has told the United Nations (UN) that the opportunity for peace in Afghanistan opened up by President Ashraf Ghani’s offer of unconditional talks to the Taliban should not be undermined by the escalation of military force.
Speaking in the UN Security Council debate on Afghanistan, Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi, warned that as the task ahead was complex and delicate, more kinetic actions or trying to “shape the battlefield’ would evoke an escalation of attacks by the insurgents and erode rather than advance the prospect of initiating the envisaged political process.
For over a decade now, she said, Pakistan has advocated the restoration of peace in Afghanistan through a negotiated settlement between Kabul and the Afghan Taliban.
“The international community has also endorsed the goal of a negotiated settlement, promoted through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned reconciliation process, as the best, and indeed only, way to realise durable peace, stability and prosperity in Afghanistan”, she added.
While reiterating Pakistan’s call on the Taliban to renounce violence and agree to join the peace talks, Ambassador Lodhi told the 15-member council that both Afghan parties — the government and the Taliban — should seize the opportunity for peace by entering into dialogue aimed at ending the prolonged conflict to usher in durable peace in Afghanistan.
The Pakistani envoy said, “After 17 years, both the Afghan government and its coalition allies, as well as the Taliban, should have learnt that neither can impose a military victory on the other,” she remarked.
Commenting on the report of the UN Secretary General, Ambassador Lodhi said that it paints a bleak picture of the situation in Afghanistan especially of the security environment, which in 2017 witnessed a sixty-seven percent spike in air strikes and increase in terrorist attacks and the highest number of civilian casualties “ever recorded” in Afghanistan.
Moreover, she said, the continuing presence of large numbers of terrorist groups and foreign terrorist fighters in Afghanistan pose a threat to the long-term stability of Afghanistan, its neighbours including Pakistan, and the entire region.

About Parliament Times

Check Also

UNGA adopts Pak-sponsored resolution on inter-religious dialogue

NEW YORK: The UN General Assembly has adopted by consensus a resolution, sponsored by Pakistan …