Saturday, May 16, 2009

Ahmadinejad to Host Summit with AF-PAK Presidents

Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai and President Asif Ali Zardari of Pakistan will arrive in Tehran on Tuesday 19 May for a tripartite summit with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The Presidential Office in Tehran did not reveal the summit agenda.

The Tehran talks are expected to focus on the rising Taliban insurgency in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Islamic Republic considers the Taliban an arch-enemy.

The AF-PAK presidents met with President Obama at the White House last week. The Tehran Summit is another sign that the Obama administration is actively encouraging US allies to engage Iran diplomatically and politically to help defeat the Taliban insurgency in the region, and to break the deadlock in US-Iran relations.

UPDATE: Pakistani President Zardari has cancelled his visit to Iran to attend the tripartite Tehran summit. The Pakistani insurgency has created unease in the government circles in Islamabad.

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