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Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi met U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session in New York.

The Foreign Minister said that close engagement between Pakistan and the United States had always been mutually beneficial and a factor for stability in South Asia. He reiterated Pakistan’s desire for a balanced relationship with the United States that was anchored in trade, investment, energy and regional connectivity.

The Foreign Minister reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to facilitating efforts for an inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan. He stressed that only a stable and broad-based government in Afghanistan, which reflects its diversity and preserves the gains made by the country since 2001, would be able to ensure that Afghan territory is never exploited by transnational terrorist groups ever again.

Foreign Minister Qureshi noted that a new political reality had emerged in Afghanistan. While the Taliban should be held to their commitments, the international community has a moral obligation to help the Afghan people deal with the growing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. He hoped that the world would not repeat the mistake of disengaging with Afghanistan.

The Foreign Minister highlighted the grave human rights situation in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir. He underscored the importance of resolving the Kashmir dispute for lasting peace and stability in South Asia.

Secretary Blinken appreciated Pakistan’s support for the evacuation of U.S citizens and other nationals from Afghanistan, and its continued efforts for peace in the region.

September 23, 2021

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