Pakistani PM says Afghan peace is in his country’s interest

FILE - In this March 13, 2009, file photo, Zalmay Khalilzad, special adviser on reconciliation speaks during a news conference in Kabul, Afghanistan. The U.S. special envoy tasked with finding a negotiated end to Afghanistan's 17-year old war has arrived in Islamabad, Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018 for talks with the country's political and military leadership. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan’s prime minister has told a U.S. special envoy that peace and reconciliation in neighboring Afghanistan is in his country’s abiding interest but stopped short of promising to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.

Imran Khan and Zalmay Khalilzad, who is tasked with finding a resolution to the Afghan war, held talks on Wednesday in Islamabad.

The meeting comes days after President Donald Trump reached out to Khan, seeking his cooperation in ending the 17-year-old conflict.

According to a statement, Khan “reiterated Pakistan’s abiding interest in achieving peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan through a political settlement.”

Washington and Kabul have long accused Pakistan of turning a blind eye to and harboring the Taliban, whose leadership is based in southwestern Pakistan. Islamabad claims it has little influence over the Taliban.

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