Afghans deem Pakistan a ‘second home’: Hekmatyar

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KABUL: Leader of the Hizb-e-Islami Afghanistan (HIA), Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, has arrived in Pakistan to meet with the country’s top leaders and discuss the Afghan peace process.


Hekmatyar is on a three-day visit to the country at the invitation of Pakistan’s foreign ministry.  


In a meeting with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi at Foreign Office on Monday, he said that Afghanistan’s people considered Pakistan a second home.


Both dignitaries discussed mutual interests’ matters, bilateral relations between the two countries and the Afghan peace process.


On his part, Qureshi said that Pakistan would continue to play the role of a facilitator in the Afghan peace process. He said peace and stability in the region were linked to long-lasting peace in Afghanistan.


Hekmatyar is also slated to meet with the country’s president, Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan, National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaisar and some other officials.


According to his schedule, he will meet Pakistan’s Jamaat-e-Islami chief, Senator Sirajul Haq.  


His trip to Pakistan comes three weeks after Abdullah Abdullah’s four-day visit to the neighbor country.


Hekmatyar’s son, Habibur Rehman, accompanying his father on the trip, told reporters that Pakistan’s role was influential in the Afghan peace process and they wanted to have a better understanding with the country.


“We will discuss the difficulties in the peace process and how to remove the obstacles, and how to make the peace process successful,” he said.