Pakistan FM meets UK FM to discuss crisis in Afghanistan

Pakistan FM urges international community to avoid 'past mistakes' over Afghanistan in meeting new UK FM
2 min read
29 September, 2021
The Pakistan and UK foreign ministers have called for a 'coordinated approach' to the situation in Afghanistan in their face-to-face meeting.
Pakistan's FM has met with a number of foreign leaders since the Taliban's takeover, including from the US and Russia [Getty]

Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi urged the international community to avoid repeating "past mistakes" in Afghanistan after meeting with the new UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss in London on Tuesday. 

Qureshi and Truss - who was appointed as a minister two weeks ago - discussed the need for a "coordinated approach" around the globe following the Taliban's takeover, according to the FCDO. 

The two leaders pledged their commitment to support Afghans in need of humanitarian assistance and preventing the country from becoming a safe haven for terrorism. 

Pakistan urges the international community "to engage constructively with Afghanistan authorities", wrote Qureshi on Twitter after the meeting. 

He added: "& [they must] not repeat past mistakes."

While Pakistan has not formally recognised the new insurgent authority yet, unlike in 1997-2001, it has agreed to maintain contacts with the Taliban alongside Russia and China in the interest of peace and prosperity. 

Pakistan's PM Imran Khan told the BBC last week that a decision to formally recognise Afghanistan's new rulers will be made collectively by neighbouring countries. 

The UK has also engaged in talks with the Taliban over evacuation efforts for British citizens and Afghan allies but refuses to recognise the group. 

Like Pakistan's PM, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has stressed that Afghanistan should not fall into the hands of Islamic State group militants or Al-Qaeda and that the world should support displaced Afghans, inside and outside of the country. 

Truss and Qureshi also discussed the need to cut carbon emissions and protect biodiversity, ahead of November’s COP26 climate change summit in Glasgow. 

Truss has met with over a dozen foreign leaders, including representatives from Kuwait, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, and Jordan, during her short tenure. 

Afghanistan has been routinely discussed at these meetings as Truss aims to facilitate a global response and is keen to distance herself from the record of predecessor Dominic Raab,  who was on holiday in Crete when the Taliban seized Kabul.