Peace with Pakistan is our national agenda: Ashraf Ghani

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Asif said Pakistan will contribute and play its due role in all the initiatives taken to bring peace to Afghanistan.

Like most Muslim countries, Afghanistan celebrates Eid on Friday while in Pakistan the holiday is celebrated on Saturday.

Afghan government, insiders said, has requested Pakistan to help resume the peace process, and the two countries will soon organise a meeting after consulting other stakeholders, which can also include Russian Federation.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Thursday he had signed deployment orders to send additional troops to Afghanistan in line with President Donald Trump's South Asia strategy.

Trump pledged in his speech to pair his hardline stance in Pakistan with an enduring USA presence in Afghanistan.


Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani speaks during his visit at the joint National assembly gathering in Kabul, Afghanistan, April 25, 2016.

In response to warnings that Washington might cut aid to Pakistan, Asif rejected the importance of American dollars, saying that Pakistan has lost more than $123 billion to terrorism since the September 11 attacks.

The two countries also squabble relentlessly over the border that separates the two.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said at the time that the administration was considering curtailing aid, severing Pakistan's status as a major non- North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally, and even hitting Islamabad for the first time with sanctions, unless it tackles anti-Afghan militant groups within its borders.

"As a result of our successful foreign policy, we have reached the point where the hopes of the past 40 years will be realised", added the Afghan President. "I think that's what a responsible nation does", Mr Mattis said at a media briefing yesterday. "It is the time that they should choose that whether they are Afghans and have been grown by an Afghan mother or they are a tool of Khawarij (members of an evil group that appeared in the first century of Islam) for creating divisions (among the people of Afghanistan)", he said.

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