Peace in Afghanistan will change the whole region: Imran Khan

Torkham: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said that peace in Afghanistan will change the whole region.

Addressing a press conference after inaugurating the 24/7 service at the Pak-Afghan Torkham border, the premier said that with the opening of the border, increasing trade will provide employment opportunities and the area will prosper.

The prime minister said that peace in Afghanistan will change the whole region as it will trigger greater trade activity up to the Central Asian States. He said this will also generate immense job opportunities for our people.

“This enables the trade activities to Central Asia from the Torkham and Peshawar will become the trade hub of Pakistan besides creating employment after the establishment of trade ties,” said the premier.

“The trade is increased up to 50 per cent only after the opening of the Torkham Terminal and it a historical step to functionalise the border crossing for 24 hours. This would also benefit the states in Central Asia,” he said.

To a question, Imran Khan said that the democracy do not flourish in the countries where the opposition don’t even have an ideology, adding that the opposition wants to keep him under pressure from day first.

“Their (opposition) sole aim is to get a National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO), Imran said and added he would not give an NRO at any cost. “Former president Pervez Musharraf’s two NRO’s have pushed the country’s debt to Rs 24,000 billion, adding that there is no future of the country if these corrupt elements were not held accountable.”

He said the previous governments left behind the historic fiscal and trade deficits which resulted in depreciation of rupee and price hike.

Regarding Afghan peace process, the premier said that Pakistan will make efforts for resumption of stalled peace talks, however, the talks between the US and Taliban collapsed. He said it will be tragedy if the talks do not resume and the Taliban do not participate in the Afghan elections.

The Prime Minister said that he will insist for resumption of peace process during his meeting with the US President Donald Trump on Monday.

He said peace in Afghanistan is in the interest of Afghan people as well as Pakistan. He said Pakistan has tried its best to improve relations with Afghanistan.

Responding to the queries of the media persons regarding Kashmir, the prime minister ruled out talks with India unless it lifts curfew in occupied Kashmir and revoke its illegal decisions there.

He said India is under the occupation of extremist and racist Hindus. He said the ideology of RSS is full of hatred against Pakistan and the Muslims.

The prime minister assured the nation that he will forcefully present the Kashmir case like never before at the UN General Assembly session.

He strongly condemned the Ghotki incident describing it a conspiracy against the country ahead of his address to the UN General Assembly session. He said attacks against the minorities are contrary to our constitution as well as teachings of Islam.

Earlier, PM Imran Khan inaugurated 24/7 Torkham Terminal at Pak-Afghan border and the terminal will serve round the clock, seven days a week.

Torkham border in Khyber District has been open 24 hours on trial basis since 2nd of this month. The project has been completed at a cost of 16 billion rupees.

The premier rejected possibilities of dialogues with Indian government until it lifts curfew and Article 370 from the occupied valley. He announced to strongly raise the Kashmir issue in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).