Cameron set for talks with Pakistan, Afghanistan leaders

Last Updated: Sun, Feb 03, 2013 11:21 hrs

British Prime Minister David Cameron will meet the leaders of Afghanistan and Pakistan this weekend as part of moves to prevent a Taliban resurgence when foreign troops leave, and to promote regional peace and stability.

Cameron will dine with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari at his country retreat Chequers in Buckinghamshire, southeast England, on Sunday, reports the Daily Times.

Cameron will then hold the first in-depth top-level talks with both leaders and their key officials on Monday.

According to reports, discussions are expected to focus on the Afghan-led peace process and how the Pakistanis and international community can support it.

A statement issued by Karzai's office said that the talks in the summit will be focused on ways to accelerate peace process in Afghanistan and further strengthen cooperations between Afghanistan and Pakistan in the fight against terrorism and extremism.

Relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan remain uneasy, despite some recent improvements.

Pakistan, the chief diplomatic backer of the Taliban, when the group was in power before 2001, has been regularly accused by both Kabul and Washington of helping destabilise Afghanistan.

Back in December, Cameron had announced Britain would withdraw 3,800 of the country's 9,000 troops from Afghanistan in 2013, as NATO prepares for a full security handover to Afghan forces at the end of next year.

There are growing concerns that a civil war could erupt as the US-led NATO troops leave the country. Monday's talks will meanwhile be the third trilateral session since summer last year, after meetings in Kabul in July and in New York in September. (ANI)

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