Pakistan not sincere about Afghan reconciliation process: Experts
KABUL (Pajhwok): Pakistan has been trying to save its face by posing as a supporter of the Afghan reconciliation process after it was badly defamed internationally due to its continued support for terrorist networks, analyst believe.
On July, 07, 2015, the Afghan government for the first time held face-to-face talks with the Taliban in Murree, a tourist resort near Islamabad. The talks were brokered by the Pakistani government as it pledged during President Ashraf Ghani's visit.
The second phase of the the peace negotiations was due to take place, but after the disclosure of the death of Taliban leader Mullah Omar, the militant group sought some time.
However, back-to-back suicide attacks in Kabul, which resulted in the killing of scores of civilians, provoked President Ashraf Ghani into announcing that his government would not participate in Islamabad-facilitated talks with Taliban.
Later on, Pakistan National Security Advisor Sartaj Azizi and Chief of Army Staff Raheel Sharif pledged support for the Afghan-led peace talks on several occasions, including during their visits to Kabul.
Recently, Qazi Khalilullah, Pakistan’s foreign ministry spokesman, during a press conference, said if Kabul and Taliban were willing, Islamabad was ready to cooperate with efforts for resumption of the peace parleys.
Political analyst and civil society activist, Khoshal Khalil, told Pajhwok Afghan News there were two possibilities of Pakistan supporting the peace effort. The first is that Pakistan is afraid of losing control of the war in Afghanistan as some Taliban fighters were interested in joining Daesh. Pakistan has no control over the self-styled group.
He said Daesh fighters did not study at Pakistani seminaries therefore, they might not have complete control over them. “In this case, Pakistan will be unable to control the situation because there is also practical support for fundamentalism in Pakistan.”
Pakistan in fact continued fueling the war in Afghanistan and simultaneously showed its preparedness for the peace parleys, he claimed. If the situation continued, Pakistan would show to the world it was cooperating with peace talks, while in reality it would be deceiving the global community, he continued.
Another analyst, Mohammad Hassan Haqyar, said that Afghan officials had been more aggressive toward Pakistan in their remarks following the deadly attacks and increased lawlessness in the country.
For example, he said, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Abdullah had criticised Pakistan in the United Nation General Assembly (UNGA) and also at other international gatherings and conferences for backing terrorist networks and being not sincere in the reconciliation process.
He added Pakistan had been defamed internationally for supporting Taliban, but it wanted to save its face and show the world it remained sincere in conflict resolution.
Looking at the security situation in the country, the Taliban have stregthened their bargaining position by overrunning northern Kunduz province and Pakistan again pushed for reconciliation process as it wanted to get the militants a role in the Afghan government and used them as lobby.
There are several reasons for Pakistan's interest in peace talks with the Taliban, Kabul University lecturer Faiz Mohammad Zaland said, adding Afghan officials had raised their voice against Islamabad. As a result, they have put pressure on the neighbouring country to support the process drive.
He said the Taliban exhibited full power in the north but they would become weaker in the winter, so Pakistan wanted to bring them to the peace talks before the season.
Recently, Deputy Chief of Army Staff Gen. Murad Ali Murad accused Pakistan army officers of having hand in the Kunduz debacle, saying the generals had fled the city while wearing women's dress or being taken out in coffins.
However, Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokesman Qazi Khalilullah rejected as baseless the claims that the Pakistani military was behind the Kunduz attack.
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