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US must be involved in Afghanistan after troops leave: Qureshi
US must be involved in Afghanistan after troops leave: Qureshi

Washington/Islamabad, Jan 19 (IANS) Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that US must remain engaged in Afghanistan's reconstruction even if it succeeds in withdrawing troops and ending its longest war, it was reported on Friday.

The foreign minister is currently in the United States on the third leg of his mission to defuse tensions in the Middle East, having already visited Tehran and Riyadh as part of Pakistan's diplomatic efforts.  Speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, Qureshi said: "Peace in Afghanistan is ultimately a shared responsibility and Pakistan [...] alone cannot do all that is needed".  The foreign minister warned the US not to neglect Afghanistan, as was seen after 1989 when Soviet troops pulled out under pressure from guerrillas fighters backed by Washington and Islamabad.  "Do not repeat the '80s," he said, adding: "Even if there is a successful agreement, challenges will remain there, so the United States and its friends and coalition partners will have to have a more responsible withdrawal.

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