US envoy discusses Afghan peace process with Pak officials

The US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Olson, met with top Pakistani diplomat in Islamabad on Saturday and “discussed the regional security situation and efforts for peace and stability in Afghanistan,” officials said.

Ambassador Olson is visiting Pakistan at a time when relations between Pakistan and the US are tense over the drone strike that killed Taliban chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour and the US blockade of the F-16 fighter plane sale. The visit is also seen important at a time when relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan are also tense over recent border skirmishes that had caused casualties on both sides last month.

Both sides also had the opportunity to discuss the efforts by the Quadrilateral Coordination Group involving Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and the US to push for the Afghan peace process. Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry while talking to Ambassador Olson reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to as an effective forum to facilitate Afghan-owned and Afghan-led reconciliation process. “The Foreign Secretary underlined Pakistan’s focus on effective border management on Afghanistan-Pakistan border with a view to enhancing security and counter-terrorism efforts,” a Foreign Ministry statement said.