Shamim Shahid | Pakistan Today | January 16, 2014
In a bid to pave ways for return of peace and stability in war and hostilities ruined Afghanistan, the Policy Group, an identical body from different regional and Asian countries unanimously asked for an end to every sort of foreign interference in affairs of that country and urged almost countries of the world to make reality all pledges and commitments made from time to time after 9/11.
The demand was made in a daylong seminar on Regional Peace and Stability-Afghanistan’s Region: 2014 and Beyond at Islamabad on Thursday. The seminar, “Envisioning Afghanistan Post 2014,” was organized by Friedrich Ebert Stiftung of Germany.
Well attended by people from different walk of life, the Seminar was addressed by Mr. Khalid Aziz from Pakistan, Maj. Gen. Ashok Mehta from India, Mahmoud Saikal and Haron Amin from Afghanistan and Dr. Sanat Kushkumbayev from Central Asian Republic of Kazakhstan. Known TV Ancher and analyst Dr. Moeed Pirzada had served as moderator.
At the very outset of seminar, Mr. Philipp Kauppert Resident Director of Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung in Pakistan has welcomed the speakers and participants and said his organization is working for strengthening democratic institutions, political stability, protection of human rights, peace and bringing an end to tensions and hostilities. He said that FES having representations in almost countries of the world and it has recently celebrated its century. He added that founder of FES had served Germany in highly esteemed capacity and due to his active participation and interests in human rights and democracy; he was given Noble Peace Award.
Ms Sarah Hees FES Regional Coordinator, Peace and Security Policy has highlighted purposes and objectives of the seminar. She has welcomed assembling of highly experts and technocrats and hoped that they would get success in their move, which is “peace in the whole region.” She said the global community attaching great hopes with a peaceful Afghanistan.
Mr. Khalid Aziz Convener Pakistan Policy group said that with latest developments at global level, now efforts for strengthening of democratic process, economic prosperity and social prosperity could be at regional level. “There is nothing against any country or force in the declaration but an appeal made for return of peace and stability in Afghanistan, he remarked, adding “peaceful Afghanistan is in interests of all regional countries.
Afghanistan’s Mahmoud Saikal and Haron Amin while highlighting miseries of their war-devastated motherland said, “neither Taliban nor other militant groups are products of Afghanistan. All those who are involved in terrorism and hostilities are being patronized and assisted from abroad.” In this respect, he recalled that Taliban entered Afghanistan from Pakistan in 1994 last. They said that it is the time to bring an end to every sort of interference in affairs of Afghanistan and let the Afghans to decide their fate without any foreign pressure and dictation.
Maj. Gen. Ashok Mehta from India said that crises and violence in Afghanistan has put at stake the regional peace, therefore, they initiated efforts for peace at regional level. He said that SAARC had failed inits objectives, particularly regarding its due role in Afghanistan. Due to failure of SAARC, the US and its allies landed in Afghanistan. It is the time to make aware and alert the regional countries regarding return of peace and security in Afghanistan.
Dr. Sanat Kushkumbayev from CentralAsianRepublic of Kazakhstan in his remarks said that they are desirous for
peace and stability in the region. But unfortunately, Afghanistan situation is worsening day by day. The afghan conflict he said could be resolved by the regional countries through mutual trust. On such grounds, they are willing to extend every sort of cooperation to the regional countries.
It may be mentioned here that for issuing joint declaration, the policy groups arranged similar discussions and debates in Afghanistan, Turkey, Dubai, Kazakhstan, India, Iran and other countries.