Taliban’s Muttaqi to attend China-Pakistan-Afghanistan dialogue in Pakistan

The Taliban’s foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi is expected in Pakistan on Friday (May 5) for bilateral meetings and to take part in the 5th China-Pakistan-Afghanistan Trilateral Foreign Ministers’ Dialogue on Saturday, Pakistan confirmed Thursday.

According to Pakistan’s foreign ministry, China’s State Councilor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang will also participate in the trilateral dialogue.

Muttaqi’s visit to Pakistan is from May 5 to May 8 and according to Islamabad he will be accompanied by the Taliban’s minister of commerce and industry Nooruddin Azizi and other senior Taliban members.

“The visit of the Acting Afghan Foreign Minister is a continuation of Pakistan’s political engagement process with Afghanistan, which, inter alia, included visit of Pakistan’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs to Kabul on 29 November 2022 and visit of a high-level delegation led by the Defence Minister of Pakistan to Kabul on 22 February 2023,” read Pakistan ministry of foreign affairs’ statement.

“During the visit, the two sides will review the entire spectrum of bilateral relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan in the political, economic, trade, connectivity, peace and security, and education domains.

“Pakistan is desirous of a peaceful, prosperous, stable and connected Afghanistan and reiterates its commitment to pursue continuous and practical engagement with the Interim Afghan Government,” the statement read.

On Monday, the UN Security Council agreed to allow Muttaqi to travel to Pakistan. Muttaqi has long been subject to a travel ban, asset freeze and arms embargo under Security Council sanctions.

According to a letter to the 15-member Security Council Taliban sanctions committee, Pakistan’s UN mission requested an exemption for Muttaqi to travel between May 6-9 “for a meeting with the foreign ministers of Pakistan and China.”

The letter did not provide details of the meetings he would attend but said Pakistan would cover all costs associated with Muttaqi’s trip.

The Security Council committee allowed Muttaqi to travel to Uzbekistan last month for a meeting of the foreign ministers of neighboring countries of Afghanistan to discuss urgent peace, security, and stability matters.