Pakistan, China and Afghanistan sign MOU on anti-terrorism cooperation

Zalmay Khalilzad held three days of talks with the Taliban in Qatar in November

After the meeting, the foreign ministers also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation over curbing terrorism.

China, a close ally of Pakistan, has lately deepened its economic and political ties with Kabul and is using its influence to try to bring the two uneasy South Asian neighbours closer, at a time when the United States has sought Pakistan's help with faltering Afghan peace talks.

Qureshi stressed that peace is vital to take forward the region on the path to sustainable development.

Qureshi is in Kabul to attend the second Afghanistan-China-Pakistan foreign ministers dialogue.

They are also scheduled to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani today.

The foreign ministers are also expected to reiterate their support to an "inclusive" Afghan-owned, and Afghan led peace process.

He said that the Daesh and militants from Central Asia and eastern China were against the peace process in Afghanistan, urging for joint efforts to tackle the extremism.

He noted that, "only through collective efforts we can wipe out terrorism and achieve the objectives of peace and development". However he said it was up to the Afghans themselves as to how they want to achieve the goal of peace. "However, right now, efforts for peace in the country and the region have increased more than ever", said Waqad.

Earlier on Saturday, the foreign minister reached Kabul to participate in the Pakistan-China-Afghanistan trilateral peace dialogue.

He said Pakistan had a very firm stance on terrorism and condemned it in all its forms and manifestations.

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Furthermore, the trio of delegations discussed the importance of China and Pakistan's "technical assistance in different sectors" for Afghanistan's progress.

Calling Afghanistan and Pakistan as strategic partners of China, Mr. Wang Yi said all three nations have agreed to step up fight against the terror groups.

China will also assist in establishing connectivity projects including a rail line between Peshawar-Kabul and Kandahar, the Chinese FM said.

"If government officials and the neighboring countries who are involved in the process work honestly, peace can be maintained in the country", said Mohammad Shoaib Tamim, a Kabul resident.

Qureshi is accompanied by Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua and other senior officials of Pakistan's foreign office, Pakistani media reported.

He said eradication of terrorism will pave the way for economic development and job creation.

The foreign minister said we all want peace and stability in Afghanistan.

It is the second meeting of the three foreign ministers after their kick off meeting in Beijing previous year.

Qureshi's Chinese counterpart, Yi, in a joint press conference held after the meeting between the foreign ministers, said that China "aims to help create a favourable environment between Pakistan and Afghanistan".

Saturday's meeting took place at a time when Washington is stepping up its efforts to hold talks with the Taliban by meeting with regional powers on how to end the U.S. war in Afghanistan which began more than 17 years ago.

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