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US must be involved in Afghanistan after troops leave – Pakistani FM

US must be involved in Afghanistan after troops leave – Pakistani FM

Pakistan has said that the US must remain engaged in Afghanistan’s reconstruction, even if it succeeds in withdrawing troops and ending its longest war.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi was visiting Washington on Thursday to speak to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about the growing momentum toward a deal between the US and the Taliban.

“Do not repeat the ‘80s,” Qureshi said in a speech. “Even if there is a successful agreement, challenges will remain there, so the US… will have to have a more responsible withdrawal,” he said.

The Taliban, in their latest negotiations with the US in Doha, have proposed a brief ceasefire in hopes of building momentum to a deal. Pakistan was the main backer of the former Taliban regime. Qureshi said the Taliban militants “are pragmatic and not foolish.” He added that “they are also fatigued.”