Maqbool Malik/Agencies

ISLAMABAD/KABUL - Pakistan and Afghanistan on Tuesday pledged to continue operations against terrorists on their respective side of the Pak-Afghan border and vowed not to allow the extremist elements to use their soil against each other.

According to ISPR, this was resolved at a high-level meeting held in Kabul between Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah in Kabul.

Gen Raheel leading a high-level delegation including ISI Director General Lt-Gen Rizwan Akhtar, met separately with President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah during the day-long visit to discuss security issues.

They appreciated improvement in bilateral relations and expressed resolve to fight terrorists across the border. They vowed not to allow use of Pakistan or Afghan soil against each other. The two sides also exchanged views on improving intelligence sharing and coordination on border.

According to sources, the army chief also raised the issue of the handover of six suspects of the attack on Army Public School who had been arrested in Afghanistan.

Last week during a media briefing, army spokesperson Maj-Gen Asim Bajwa said that the six men suspected of being involved in APS attack had been arrested by the Afghan authorities on intelligence passed on by Pakistan.

“The army chief also apprised the Afghan President of Pakistan’s efforts to push the peace process forward,” a Pashtu-language statement issued by the Presidential Palace in Kabul said.

“The messages from the Pakistani delegation were positive and their commitments have raised hopes that results will be clear within weeks.”

“The Afghan government hopes that the Pakistani pledges and steps will yield positive results,” the statement further said.

The army chief also met Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah during his visit. Abdullah acknowledged the positive developments in bilateral relations between the two countries including progress in operations, border management and intelligence sharing. Earlier, ISPR said that the army and ISI chiefs had arrived in Kabul on a one-day visit to discuss matters pertaining to security.

Gen Raheel visited Kabul immediately after the horrific attack on the Peshawar school on December 16 last to hold key meetings with President Ghani and ISAF commander. Since then both Kabul and Islamabad have enhanced intelligence sharing as well as military-to-military cooperation against the common enemy.

During that meeting, President Ghani had assured Gen Raheel Sharif that Afghan soil would not be allowed for terrorist activities against Pakistan, and any signature found in this regard will be immediately eliminated. Further, the ISAF commander had assured the army chief of their complete support in eliminating terrorists in his areas of responsibility.

Agencies add: Gen Raheel Sharif said his country is sharing “unprecedented” levels of intelligence with Afghanistan and both countries are working “hand in glove” to eradicate the menace of terrorism.

During an unannounced visit Tuesday to Kabul, Gen Raheel said, “Enemies of Afghanistan are enemies of Pakistan.” He spoke to reporters alongside Afghanistan’s Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah.

Afghan Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Ayoub Salangi told the gathering that about 50,000 insurgents of various factions were active in Afghanistan.