Pakistan to mull transportation of Indian wheat to Afghanistan, says PM Imran Khan

India’s efforts to provide relief materials to the Afghan people in recent weeks, including an offer to supply 50,000 tonnes of wheat, have been held up by Pakistan’s refusal to allow the use of its territory for transporting the aid.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday conveyed his country’s position on the transportation of Indian wheat to Afghanistan to the Taliban’s acting foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, during a meeting in Islamabad. (REUTERS PHOTO.)
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday conveyed his country’s position on the transportation of Indian wheat to Afghanistan to the Taliban’s acting foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, during a meeting in Islamabad. (REUTERS PHOTO.)
Updated on Nov 12, 2021 11:45 PM IST
Copy Link

Islamabad will favourably consider a proposal to transport wheat offered by New Delhi as humanitarian aid for the people of Afghanistan through Pakistani territory, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Friday.

Khan conveyed his country’s position on the matter to the Taliban’s acting foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, during a meeting in Islamabad, according to tweets from the official account of the prime minister’s office.

The development came a day after India emphasised the urgent need to provide humanitarian aid to the Afghan people and acknowledged, without directly naming Pakistan that efforts in this regard are being held up by the lack of unhindered access.

India’s efforts to provide relief materials to the Afghan people in recent weeks, including an offer to supply 50,000 tonnes of wheat, have been held up by Pakistan’s refusal to allow the use of its territory for transporting the aid.

“The Prime Minister conveyed that in the current context Pakistan would favourably consider the request by Afghan brothers for transportation of wheat offered by India through Pakistan on exceptional basis for humanitarian purposes and as per modalities to be worked out,” said a tweet from the Pakistani prime minister’s office.

Khan told Muttaqi and his delegation that Pakistan had consistently called for the provision of immediate humanitarian relief for Afghanistan. He reiterated “Pakistan’s resolve to stand by the Afghan people by extending all possible support including humanitarian assistance-in-kind to withstand the coming winter season”.

Pakistan will provide essential food items, including wheat and rice, emergency medical supplies, and shelter items to Afghanistan, he said.

Khan also “underscored the urgent need to release Afghanistan’s frozen assets and facilitation of banking transactions to prevent an economic meltdown”.

He conveyed Pakistan’s support to Afghanistan and its people in overcoming the dire challenges faced by the country. He stressed the importance of a “peaceful, stable, sovereign, prosperous and connected Afghanistan for Pakistan and the region”.

He said that “continued security and resolute counter-terrorism actions, respect for rights of all Afghans, and inclusivity in governance and politics would further contribute to Afghanistan’s stability”. He also hoped the Taliban setup in Kabul “will continue to constructively engage the international community and will keep on taking positive measures to address the prevailing challenges”.

On Thursday, Pakistan hosted a meeting of the “extended troika” that was attended by special envoys of China, Russia and the US to discuss the situation in Afghanistan. The members of the extended troika also met Muttaqi and his delegation on the sidelines of the meeting.

According to a joint statement issued after the meeting of the extended troika, the members of the group expressed concern at the severe humanitarian and economic situation in Afghanistan, and called for arrangements for commercial air traffic in order to enable the uninterrupted flow of humanitarian aid.

The extended troika also called on the Taliban to take steps to form an inclusive and representative government that respects the rights of all Afghans and provides for equal rights of women and girls. The group agreed to continue “practical engagement” with the Taliban to encourage moderate and prudent policies to achieve a stable and prosperous Afghanistan.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close Story
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Tuesday, December 07, 2021