USA should show restraint on drone strikes during Afghan peace talks: Asif

USA should show restraint on drone strikes during Afghan peace talks: Asif

However, sources said that the summit was a "symbolic gathering" that was meant to set the ball rolling for the four-state forum that has been inactive for over a year now.

The first quadrilateral meet was held between Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and USA on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia Summit in 2015, and following that four other meetings were held in Kabul and Islamabad.

"Deputy foreign minister with a delegation and a representative from the High Peace Council went to Oman for the meeting".

Last year, the Taliban refused to carry on talks after their leader Mullah Akhtar Mansur was killed during a strike by U.S. drone in Pakistan's premises.

Afghan Senate members said they are not hopeful of any positive result emerging from the meeting.

Drone strikes are "counterproductive and against [the] spirit of ongoing cooperation and intelligence sharing being diligently undertaken by Pakistan", he was quoted as saying by Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the army's media wing.

The barrage on Monday targeted a meeting of Haqqani fighters in Pakistan's remote tribal Kurram district along the Afghan border in the deadliest attack on the group this year.

But they are quick to point out that the Taliban's absence reduces the already slim chances of any breakthrough.

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Pakistan has big stakes in Afganistan which seems to be slipping from its hand after President Trump emphatically laid down his strategy accusing the country of offering a safe haven to "agents of chaos".

The new South Asia policy that he announced also downplayed the importance of immediate talks with Taliban, insisting instead on weakening the militants in the battlefield before resuming talks with them.

"We were encouraged, just this week, with General Bajwa's visit to Afghanistan... he had very good meetings with Afghan leadership".

The US has increased pressure on Pakistan in recent months to crack down on the outfit.

The strikes came a day after roadside bombs killed four Pakistani security troops engaged in a search operation for militants in Kurram.

Last year, the negotiation process was halted by the Taliban after their leader Mullah Akhtan killed in a drone strike by the US.

Meanwhile, the death toll from USA strikes in the same area on Monday increased to 26, a Pakistan government official informed AFP.

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