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Varsity holds conference on Nato’s Afghan drawdown

Peshawar

May 23, 2015

MARDAN: The Abdul Wali Khan University organized another major conference in which foreign scholars also participated and expressed their views on ”The Nato Drawdown from Afghanistan - Opportunities and Challenges.”
The two-day event, which concluded the other day, brought the focus again on the Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan (AWKUM). This was the second international conference held at the university in the recent months.
The conference was held at the new Garden Campus of the university. Along with the foreigners, academics and experts from all over Pakistan also spoke at the conference on a host of issues. The conference was inaugurated and also closed down AWKUM) Vice-Chancellor, Dr Ihsan Ali. He praised the university’s political science department for organizing the international event and pointed out that AWKUM despite being a young university has been staging such major events in recent years.
The five working sessions of the conference were chaired by the Bacha Khan University, Charsadda Vice-Chancellor Dr Fazal Rahim Marwat, AWKUM’s Department of Political Science chairman Zahid Ali Marwat, University of Swabi Vice-Chancellor Dr Noor Jehan, senior journalist Rahimullah Yusufzai and AWKUM Vice-Chancellor Dr Ihsan Ali.
Over two days, the keynote speakers were former senior bureaucrat and ambassador to Afghanistan, Rustam Shah Mohmand and Brig (Retd) Mahmood Shah, who served as secretary, law and order, at the Fata Secretariat, in the past.
Among the foreign scholars, Turkey’s Dr Regip Kutey spoke about the current challenges and future opportunities in Afghanistan, India’s Shanthie D’Souza highlighted the international intervention in Afghanistan and the prospects for peace and stability in the country, Canada’s Dr David Jones expressed his views on the problem of Durand Line in a future Afghanistan settlement, Prof Anatol Lieven of UK talked about the dilemmas of the US global order, and another British scholar

Christopher Donnelly analysed the challenges and opportunities resulting from the Nato drawdown from Afghanistan.
The Pakistani scholars and experts who made presentations at the conference were Dr Noman Hanif, Ambassador Khalid Khattak, Dr Rashid of University of Sargodha, Dr Zahid Anwar, Dr Fakharul Islam and Dr Sarfaraz Khan of the University of Peshawar, Dr Musarrat Jabeen, Dr Mohammad Khan, Brig (Retd) Mohammad Khan, Dr Manzoor Afridi, Dr Ahsan, Jan Sartaj, Lt Col (Retd) Hikmat Shah Afridi, Naseer Ahmad, former home secretary Akhtar Ali Shah, Rahimullah Yusufzai and Col (Retd) Saifur Rahman.
The speakers focused on all aspects of the problem and in particular highlighted the impact on Pakistan as a result of the Nato drawdown from Afghanistan. They felt Afghanistan and Pakistan have to work hard to help each other to gain stability. The ongoing improvement in Pak-Afghan relations was welcomed as a means to stabilize the region and tackle the challenge of terrorism. The stalled peace process in Afghanistan and the role of Pakistan in facilitating peace talks between the Afghan Taliban and the Afghan government were also analysed.

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