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Pakistan, Afghanistan, US hold talks on Afghan peace

Pakistan,Diplomacy,Defence/Security, Fri, 27 Apr 2012 IANS

Islamabad, April 27 (IANS) Top Pakistani, Afghan and US officials Friday agreed to form a group at the UN to coordinate activities in New York and accelerate the process of reconciliation in war-torn Afghanistan.


The group would also work for the removal of the names of Taliban leaders from the UN blacklist, Xinhua reported.


The UN Security Council has nearly 140 names of top Taliban leaders on its sanctions list. Taliban negotiators in Qatar are demanding removal of the names for success of peace talks.


Top Pakistani, Afghan and US diplomats said at a joint press conference in Islamabad that the group will comprise permanent representatives of the three countries at the UN.


Marc Grossman, special US representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Jawed Ludin and Pakistani Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani took part in the talks.


Jilani said Pakistan has reiterated its support to the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process, and that Islamabad will facilitate any process that could bring peace and stability to the war-hit neighbouring country.


Grossman said the US will only open the doors of dialogue for those Taliban to whom the Afghan government gives permission.


He also reaffirmed America's support for the Afghan peace process.


Ludin said there was a need to make the political process successful so that those renouncing violence could be brought into the mainstream.


"We need to provide a safe passage to those shunning violence, and in this context a sub-group is being established to facilitate their return to normal life," he said.


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