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July 13, 2019

US, China, Russia appreciate Pak efforts for Afghan peace

National

July 13, 2019

WASHINGTON: US, Russia, China and Pakistan are encouraging all Afghan peace stakeholders to take steps to reduce violence in the country leading to a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire that starts with intra-Afghan negotiations.

In a joint statement released here on Friday, China, Russia and the US welcomed Pakistan joining the consultation on the Afghan peace process and believed that "Pakistan can play an important role in facilitating peace in Afghanistan." Pakistan in return appreciated the constructive efforts by the China-Russia-US trilateral consultation.

After the third consultation in Beijing, the four sides exchanged views on the current situation and joint efforts for realizing a political settlement to advance peace, stability, and prosperity of Afghanistan and the region, according to the statement.

It said that the four sides emphasized the importance of the trilateral consensus on the Afghan peace process reached in Moscow on April 25, 2019. "All sides welcomed recent positive progress as the crucial parties concerned have advanced their talks and increased contacts with each other. All sides also welcomed intra-Afghan meetings held in Moscow and Doha," the statement said.

The four sides called for relevant parties to grasp the opportunity for peace and immediately start intra-Afghan negotiations between the Taliban, Afghan government, and other Afghans. They also re-affirmed that negotiations should be "Afghan-led and Afghan-owned" and further agreed that these negotiations should produce a peace framework as soon as possible. "This framework should guarantee the orderly and responsible transition of the security situation and detail an agreement on a future inclusive political arrangement acceptable to all Afghans," the statement said.

They agreed to maintain the momentum of consultation, and to invite other important stakeholders to join on the basis of the trilateral consensus agreed on April 25, 2019 in Moscow.