Afghan president arrives in Pakistan for trilateral summit
Afghan President Hamid Karzai arrived Thursday in Islamabad for a summit with the leaders of Iran and the host country that was expected to focus on the security situation and peace talks in Afghanistan, DPA reported.
Karzai is seeking greater support from Pakistan on efforts to start peace talks with the Taliban to end 10 years of war in Afghanistan as the three leaders prepare for Friday's summit.
Pakistan is believed to have influence over the Islamist militants, mainly because it supported their emergence in the mid-1990s.
Its Inter-Services Intelligence is believed to have covertly helped them to organize and launch counteroffensive after their ouster as Afghanistan's rulers in a 2001 US-led invasion.
Karzai, who was making his third visit to Pakistan since his 2009 re-election, held talks with Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani shortly after his arrival on the conflict with the Taliban and their countries' economic ties, Geo television reported.
Both men were to meet Friday with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was due to arrive in Pakistan later Thursday.
Iran has influence over the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance in Afghanistan and is seen as a help with the reconciliation process there.
The presidential palace in Kabul said the three leaders would discuss enhancing their anti-terrorism and economic cooperation and said Karzai would meet separately with Ahmadinejad.
"The trilateral summit will discuss cooperation on counterterrorism and transnational organized crime, including drug and human trafficking, and border management," an official with Pakistan's Foreign Affairs Ministry said.