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NATO Thanks Pakistan for Aid in Evacuation of Foreigners from Afghanistan

by Newsweek Pakistan

Meeting between NATO officials and Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood. Photo courtesy PID

In separate meeting with Army chief, envoy appreciates Islamabad’s efforts for regional stability

The NATO senior civilian representative to Afghanistan, Ambassador Stefano Pontecorvo, on Wednesday thanked Pakistan for its assistance in evacuating the staff and citizens of allied countries from Kabul following the Taliban’s takeover of the war-torn state.

According to a statement issued by the Foreign Office, the visiting dignitary met Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood in Islamabad as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)’s outreach to Pakistan. It said that Pakistan values its relations with NATO, “which are based on shared interests of peace and stability in the region.”

During the meeting, read the statement, the foreign secretary shared Pakistan’s perspective on the latest developments in the region and stressed the importance of a peaceful and stable Afghanistan. He also highlighted Pakistan’s facilitative role in the evacuation of diplomatic personnel and staff of various embassies and international organizations from Afghanistan and underlined the need for the international community to remain engaged with the new Afghanistan government to avoid a potential humanitarian crisis and prevent the possibility of a mass exodus.

Separately, Pontecorvo also met Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa, with the military’s media wing saying the Army chief had stressed upon the need for global convergence on Afghanistan to avoid a humanitarian crisis.

According to a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the meeting discussed matters of mutual interest, peace and stability in the region and the prevailing Afghanistan situation. It said that the visiting dignitary had appreciated Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan, including the successful evacuation operations and efforts for regional stability.

Pontecorvo also assured Gen. Bajwa of enhancing NATO’s cooperation with Pakistan on Afghanistan, as well as continuing regular engagement by NATO countries for all bilateral issues.

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