PESHAWAR, 09 December: The Heart of Asia Conference concluded in Islamabad on Wednesday with the adoption of the Islamabad Declaration.

After a day of intensive discussions and deliberations, the participants agreed to increase cooperation in six areas for confidence building.

The confidence building measures will include cooperation on countering terrorism and security related matters, illegal smuggling of narcotics and cultivation of trade and commercial activities.

Earlier, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani inaugurated the conference, aimed at promoting peace and stability in Afghanistan and strengthening regional economic cooperation and connectivity.

Addressing the conference Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif reiterated the resolve that Islamabad would always stand by Kabul. He urged for a joint approach to combat the menace of extremism and terrorism and asked the international community to support the Afghan peace process.

 

Nawaz Sharif said, “the enemies of Afghanistan are the enemies of Pakistan and we will continue to support an Afghan led and Afghan owned peace process”.

 

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said terrorism was a common problem of Pakistan and Afghanistan as both the countries had suffered massively in the war against terror.

 

Ashraf Ghani also thanked Pakistan for hosting millions of Afghan refugees on its territory over the last three decades.

 

Indian foreign minister Shushma Swaraj in her address urged need to strengthen regional trade and cooperation between the countries of the region.

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