Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Tuesday said he would visit Pakistan this month for talks with Prime Minister Imran Khan for a roadmap for practical exchange of views and work.President Ghani was speaking in capital Kabul after he offered Eid prayers. He also announced the release of hundreds of Taliban prisoners from different jails. The Afghan leader announced he would visit Islamabad on June 27 on an invitation from Prime Minister Imran Khan, according to a statement posted on the president’s website. Officials in Islamabad also confirmed the visit to Daily Times.An official source said Pakistan had proposed June 27-28 for the visit. “We need patient, persevered and systematic thinking to find a common and practical way forward despite difficulties and to open a new historic chapter in relations between the two countries,” Ghani said while talking about his upcoming visit to Pakistan. He described as “useful” his meeting with Imran Khan on the side-lines of the OIC Summit in Makkah earlier this month. He added that “instead of protocol-rich, formal meetings, we need practical exchange of views, and that is why I have accepted Imran Khan’s invitation to visit Islamabad”.Pakistan and Afghan sources in Islamabad say Afghan officials would visit Pakistan next week to discuss arrangements and agenda for the president’s visit. Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Idrees Zaman would lead the delegation, who would hold talks in the Foreign Office. The visit will also mark revival of the Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS), which is a comprehensive bilateral forum for discussions all issues. Last meeting of the APAPPS on refugees was held in Islamabad in November, while Kabul later refused to hold quarterly review meeting as it wanted a joint meeting of religious scholars.Daily Times has learnt that Pakistan had shared a draft with Afghan leaders of a joint statement to be adopted in the “ulema” conference, but Kabul’s inaction delayed the conference. Officials insist Pakistan is ready to cooperate. Officials believe Imran Khan’s “sincere and forward-looking approach to meaningfully engage with Afghanistan and to discuss bilateral issues through consultations has been successful”.Ghani’s phone call to Imran Khan on May 5 paved the way for the resumption of high-level contacts. The Afghan president later sent his top security adviser Hamdullah Mohib and Interior Minister Masood Andarabi for high-level security talks in Pakistan. Despite some of Imran Khan’s earlier, misunderstood remarks, in Afghanistan, Ghani now seems convinced in engaging with the new Pakistani leadership. Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi have maintained a consistently positive approach in their political messaging about Afghanistan. It appears that Ghani now feels that a practical and politically feasible way exists for him to work with Pakistan. This could be beneficial for him both domestically as well as in finding effective solutions to tricky issues in Pakistan-Afghanistan bilateral relations that must be overcome to ensure long-term peace and progress in Afghanistan.Pakistan has adopted a wise approach to work with the National Unity Government in Kabul despite the general impression that the US has left it out of the peace negotiations. The opposition candidates are asking for President Ghani’s resignation as his five-year term expired on May 22, and he has continued after the Supreme Court allowed him to stay until the new elections due in September.