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Trilateral meeting significant for Afghanistan: Jawad

Pajhwok Report - Nov 17, 2008

NEW YORK (PAN): The Afghan-Saudi-Pak tri-lateral meeting held in New York last week at the initiative of the Saudi King Abdullah would play a significant role in bringing peace and stability in the region, the Afghan Ambassador to the US, Said T. Jawad, has said.

"We were seeking his support for the past two years. So, finally he took the initiative to give his support to help us out," Jawad told Pajhwok Afghan News in an interview.

While there was no joint statement after the meeting, it is considered to be a significant step in the right direction. The three leaders Saudi King Abdullah; Pak President, Asif Ali Zardari, and the Afghan President, Hamid Karzai -- were in New York last week to attend the inter-faith summit of the UN General Assembly.

"This tri-lateral meeting with Saudi Arabia is of particular significance, because King Abdullah not only has a lot of political weight, but also he has lot of spiritual influence," the Ambassador said.

Terming it as a very successful meeting, Jawad said, the three leaders, sat down close to an hour in New York to discuss issues relating to the violence in the region, and building trust between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Saudi Arabia is a common friend of both Afghanistan and Pakistan, and is helping the two countries overcome security challenge, he observed.

"This meeting was of particular significance because the new civilian government of Pakistan has been willing to work with us and received a clear message from Saudi Arabia that would help the two countries to short out some of the security challenges," he said.

The Ambassador said, the Saudi King would continue to play the important role he has started. "He has a very personal interest in the security and stability in Afghanistan. His message of support to people of Afghanistan was very clearly communicated to our friends of Pakistan," he said.

However, the peace talks with Taliban did not come up during the meeting, even though these issues are related and connected. "This meeting was how to help the two governments in enhancing the mutual strength and cooperate in fighting terrorism and enhancing security. This shows the personal interest and commitment of His Majesty King Abdullah, to which we are grateful," he said.

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