Speakers at the inaugural session of the day-long conference on ‘Rebuilding Afghanistan Together ‘ here on Friday called for collective efforts for rebuilding the war-ravaged county. They said that cooperation of regional countries, especially Pakistan, was imperative for progress and prosperity of the Afghan nation. President Institute of Regional Studies Ambassador Nadeem Riyaz in his address said that Pakistan and Afghanistan shared a long history of relations and rebuilding these ties was a vital component of Pakistan’s foreign policy. He said that the departure of foreign troops had created an opportunity to end misperptions and rebuild trust between the two nations and hoped that the recent change in Afghanistan would prove helpful in building a peaceful and stable Afghanistan. Nadeem Riyaz said that though the recent change in Afghanistan needed international recognition Pakistan was desirous of friendly relations based on brotherhood and trust. He said there was a need to further boost people to people relationships and boost cultural and media exchanges. If the trust would be built, the designs of the detractors could be foiled. He said that besides Central Asia, South and West could benefit from regional connectivity after restoration and durable peace in Afghanistan. Director General Pak, Afghan Youth Forum Salman Javed said that after US troops withdrawal a vacuum was created which resulted in humanitarian problems. He said that PAYF had adopted the method of public diplomacy to help the people of Afghanistan and added that “It has enabled academia through the knowledge corridor and media corridor. Former Governor Kabul Ahmed Alizai thanked PAYF for providing a platform to intellectuals from both countries to sit together and ponder ways for rebuilding Afghanistan. He said that former Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai is on record saying that Kabul would support Pakistan in case India attacked Pakistan. He said that Pakistan was created in the name of Islam and Afghan people had bond of brotherhood with Pakistanis. He said that the Taliban were Afghan people and not foreign occupants. He said that all knew that the US was in Afghanistan to protect its own interests and not the interests of the Afghan people. He said now it was an ideal opportunity for Pakistan and Afghanistan to work together for better future of Afghan people. He said that when the Taliban entered major Afghan cities after US withdrawal, they faced little resistance which showed the people supported them. Ahemdzai said that Prime Minister Imran Khan was trying for promotion of Islamic values and Afghan people support this vision. Another Afghan delegate Maulvi Ataur Rehman said that organising this event for bringing people of Afghanistan and Pakistan closer was a good initiative of PAYF. He opined that Pakistan could play an important role for a peaceful and stable Afghanistan. People of Afghanistan and Pakistan had centuries old historical relations and they share numerous commonalities, he remarked.