Pakistan’s powerful army chief has left for Kabul amid efforts to revive peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.

Military spokesman Lt. Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa said army chief Gen. Raheel Sharif is traveling to Afghanistan with “sincerity and optimism” for better border management and to discuss peace process in Afghanistan.

Sharif’s visit comes more than two weeks after a regional conference held in Islamabad called for the resumption of Afghan-Taliban peace negotiations. The conference was attended by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

The talks between the Taliban and Kabul have been on the hold since July, when Afghanistan announced the death of Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar.