Pakistan and Afghanistan reconciliation — V

Source: Express Tribune
Author: Najmuddin A Shaikh

If we support an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process of reconciliation and if we are part of the solution and not part of the problem, then it is logical for the Afghans to expect us to use our influence with the Taliban to persuade them not only to negotiate, but also to adopt a stance in the negotiations that would lead to peace and stability in Afghanistan.

Who should we talk to? To date we have denied, or at least been ambivalent about, the existence of a Taliban shura on our soil but the fact remains that the Taliban presence in Balochistan — be it in the refugee camps along the border, in Chaman or the Kharotabad and Pashtunabad areas of Quetta — is well-established. (That this presence has contributed to the sectarian and ethnic strife and to upsetting the demographic balance in Balochistan is also indubitable). These are the people we have to address.

I think we should be clear in our own mind about the degree of influence we do have.

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Categories: Afghanistan, Pakistan

3 replies

  1. Whoso makes a righteous intercession shall have a share thereof, and whoso makes an evil intercession, shall have a like portion thereof; and Allah is Powerful over everything. (Quran, 4:86)

  2. Alhamdulillah! The problems between Pak and Afghanistan are I think a result of the US threatening Pakistan with cooperation in ‘The War on Terror’, or the state of being bombed into an ‘ashtray’ condition, as they did in Iraq.

    • I would have to disagree.

      It is far too simplistic to shunt the cause of one’s troubles into the lap of another party . U.S. may play a meddling role to preserve its’ interests in the region, but it is successful only because those amongst whom it meddles let it, weakened as they are by corruption, poverty and religious factionalism.

      Secondly, the problems between Pakistan and Afghanistan emerged during the cold war and continue today as the Pakistani ISI and military struggle to retain a hold upon Afghan soil against Indian ventures by protecting and empowering the Taliban. Initially, this was only at the expense of Afghans. Now it is also at the expense of the Pakistani state and all those who reside within its borders, as the extremists elements have breached and now reside and flourish within its borders.

      Hence, the Quranic quotation I referenced.

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