Afghanistan and Pakistan today held inaugural meetings of the five Working Groups (WGs) under the Afghanistan and Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS) in Kabul. The Afghan delegation was led by the deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Karzai, and the Pakistani side was led by the Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua. The. The Pakistan delegation comprised of a 28-member multi-departmental high level delegation which included representatives from MOFA, SAFRON, Commerce, FBR, Railways, Communications, Interior, Military and Intelligence which met with their Afghan counterparts in respective working groups.
The APAPPS framework provides a comprehensive and structured mechanism to enhance engagement between counterpart institutions of the two countries. APAPPS is comprised of five Working Groups on Politico-diplomatic, Military, Intelligence, Economic & Trade and Refugees issues. Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister and Foreign Secretary of Pakistan led their respective sides in the politico-diplomatic WG besides co-chairing the opening and closing sessions of the APAPPS.
In the inaugural joint meeting of the WGs, the Afghan and Pakistani side assessed prospects for the APAPPS forum that covers all areas of mutual interest including counter terrorism & security, peace and reconciliation, bilateral trade and transit, connectivity, Afghan refugees’ repatriation and promoting people to people contacts.
Following the APAPPS inaugural session, five WGs held their respective Group meetings at the level of relevant Ministries and departments. The WGs, besides discussing important issues in each area, also deliberated on the TORs for future course of action and the agenda items for their next round of meetings to be held in Islamabad at mutually agreed dates.
The concluding session noted the great importance of APAPPS to deliver on the commitments made under this forum within the mutually agreed time frame.