News / Asia

US, Pakistan, Afghanistan Call on Taliban to Join Reconciliation

Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul, left, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar shake hands before a Core Group Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo, Japan, July 8, 2012.
Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul, left, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar shake hands before a Core Group Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo, Japan, July 8, 2012.
TOKYO, Japan — Foreign ministers from the United States, Afghanistan, and Pakistan met Sunday on the sidelines of an Afghan donor conference in Japan to discuss cross-border cooperation and security.  They called on Taliban fighters to join Afghan reconciliation efforts.

In a joint statement following their talks, Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul, Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said al-Qaida's core leadership in the region has been decimated, reducing the threat to peace and security that led the international community to intervene in Afghanistan in 2001.

They are backing an inclusive Afghan reconciliation process "through which individuals and groups break ties with international terrorism, renounce violence, and abide by Afghanistan's constitution" because they say that is the surest way to lasting security for Afghanistan and the broader region.

Some of the Taliban attacks in Afghanistan are staged from Pakistan, and U.S. officials say they do not believe Pakistan is doing everything it can to prevent those attacks, especially raids carried out by the Haqqani network.

Senior Obama administration officials say Secretary Clinton and Foreign Minister Khar discussed the Haqqani network in separate talks before the trilateral meeting. It was the first meeting for the two foreign ministers since Pakistan reopened NATO supply lines to Afghanistan that were closed following the killing of 24 Pakistani troops by NATO forces in November.

That route was reopened after Secretary Clinton Tuesday offered her "sincere condolences to the families of the Pakistani soldiers who lost their lives" saying she and Foreign Minister Khar acknowledged the mistakes that led to the attack in the border town of Salala.

Speaking to reporters in Tokyo Sunday, Secretary Clinton says the two countries are moving on.

"We are both encouraged that we've been able to put the recent difficulties behind us so that we can focus on the many challenges still ahead of us, and we want to use the positive momentum generated by our recent agreement to take tangible, visible steps on our many shared core interests," she said.

She says first and foremost is defeating terrorists who threaten Afghan and Pakistani stability as well as the interests of the United States.

"I've said many times that this is a challenging but essential relationship," said Clinton.  "It remains so. And I have no reason to believe it will not continue to raise hard questions for us both."

U.S. officials say there is now the opportunity to get back to closer counter-insurgency cooperation with Pakistan now that the Afghan border is again open to NATO supplies.

You May Like

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: mike from: use
July 10, 2012 1:46 AM
That Paki foreign minister had better be careful, if her beauty sexually arouses the Taliban, they will shoot her in the head.

by: John from: Accra
July 09, 2012 6:29 AM
I thought i read somewhere that America NEVER negotiates with TERRORISTS? We live in a strange world of double standards.

by: Halo from: NY
July 08, 2012 10:38 AM
Just wait and see how West will use both these countries against, China, Iran and India...
In Response

by: Kamran Ali from: Pakistan
July 09, 2012 4:04 AM
I completely agree with Halo , that West as whole is vibrant at the moment ,to contain countries with burgeoning economic prospects in the region. Another finding that i would like to share with my friends is that Afghanistan has not yet become free to be independent in pursuing the policy her people want. After decades of incessant war Afghan puppet government has given to Indian plan to bleed Pakistan , Indian 200 embassies along the Durand line, and and modern weapon given to TEHRIK E TALIBAN, and the recurring attacks on Pakistani check posts by terrorists .....that all guarantee another standoff between Pakistan and Afghanistan at the instigation of India.

by: Steve from: USA
July 08, 2012 10:29 AM
What happens to the US policy of not negotiating with the terrorists? Is it because Obama is a Muslim?

What agreements will be made with Taliban, that kafirs can be forcible converted or killed per Islam/Koran?
or it is okay to do jihad against the kafirs?

Please help in finding any sense in this if you are a freedom lover.



by: Anonymous
July 08, 2012 9:50 AM
America is the problem. They refused to provide any evidence on Osama to the Taliban government when requested. Reconciliation can only begin after the US/NATO completely withdraw and pay huge reparations to the Taliban and the Afghan people.

by: Popsiq from: Canada
July 08, 2012 9:48 AM
What's changed but the rhetoric?

There is abosolutely nothing new in the immediate future of Afghanistan. Least of all anything that would encourage the Taliban to want to be part of the US 'solution' to the problem. Their position - in brief, un-invade Afghanistan you're not in the peace profile - is no less valid than the 'world' restatement of 'wanting to rebuild Afghanistan' that was made 13 years ago as preface to a regime change.

Now there is just more of Afghanstan to rebuild, with the resources and good will that were there in 2001 now wasted on 13 years of world-class war fighting.

And is that, now, going to stop? No siree! It will just be a leaner, meaner fighting machine - with oodles of tactical air support- helping the Afghans find the bad guys to kill.

$60 billion a year insurgencies, especially unfinished ones, just don't drop to $ 0 with a declaration of peace. So any relief for American tax debtors is at least another decade down the road.

The only good news seems to be that the suckers have taken the bait again. Let's see if they cough up the moolah.

by: Jen
July 08, 2012 9:43 AM
The Afghan guy looks less than thrilled to be shaking hands with two women.

by: heshukui from: china
July 08, 2012 9:20 AM
Good!

by: Colin Wellstead from: Sydney
July 08, 2012 9:02 AM
Looks like the usual suspects are up to their tricks again. The real criminals run free and dine on caviar.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More