Afghan President Hamid Karzai has arrived in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad for key talks with the new leaders of the country over peace negotiations with the Taliban.
The Afghan president on Monday met with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in Islamabad. Afghanistan seeks to open up a direct channel of communication with Taliban militants to end 12 years of war. The trip signals a desire by both countries to overcome years of distrust and hostility and to foster stability. Karzai’s previous visits to Pakistan have been fruitless, but this time he is hoping for favorable results. Before his visit to Islamabad, Karzai told a news conference in Kabul on Saturday that “the peace negotiations " will be on top of his trip agenda. He praised the Pakistani new premier for having " all the right intentions for stability and peace " in Afghanistan.
" I will travel to Pakistan hoping to get a result out of it. I ' m hopeful, but not sure, I will only go with hopes, and wish they materialize, " he said.
Kabul has already called for the release of senior Taliban figures detained in Pakistan to encourage the group to come to the negotiating table. The Taliban have so far refused to contact the Afghan government because they consider Karzai a US puppet.