Pakistan urges Taliban to remain engaged in Afghan peace course of


Pakistan on Monday urged the Taliban to stay engaged within the Afghan peace course of after the armed group stated it will now shun summits about Afghanistan till all overseas forces go away.

The choice was taken after the US stated final week it will withdraw all troops by Sept. 11 this yr, later than a Might 1 deadline set out by the earlier administration.

“They take their very own selections however we’ll do no matter we are able to to persuade them that it’s of their nationwide curiosity to stay engaged,” Pakistani International Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi stated of the Taliban in an interview with Reuters in Abu Dhabi.

The refusal has thrown the peace course of into disarray with Turkey scheduled for Saturday to host a summit that diplomats had hoped may create new momentum in the direction of a political settlement between the Taliban and Afghan authorities.

The Taliban dominated Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001 after they had been ousted by U.S.-led forces, however they nonetheless management huge areas.

Qureshi stated withdrawal delays had been at all times a chance because of logistics however that the Taliban had largely succeeded of their goal for overseas troops to withdraw and so ought to present flexibility in the direction of the brand new Sept. 11 deadline.

“The troops will likely be out and a date has been given and the method begins on the first of Might and goes on till the 11th of September so there’s a particular time-frame,” Qureshi stated.

Sources have informed Reuters Pakistan was placing stress on the militants to come back again to the desk.

Qureshi stated he believed the Taliban would profit from staying concerned however stated he had no contact with the group.

Pakistan, which helped facilitate U.S.-Taliban negotiations in Doha that resulted within the preliminary Might 1 withdrawal deal, wields appreciable affect with the Taliban.

The insurgents have sanctuaries in Pakistan, whose important military-run intelligence service provides them help, in keeping with U.S. and Afghan officers. Pakistan denies the allegation.

Qureshi stated he feared violence may escalate if the peace course of stays deadlocked, plunging Afghanistan into civil struggle and resulting in an exodus of Afghans.

Pakistan, which hosts shut to three million Afghan refugees and financial migrants, has constructed 90% of a fence alongside its disputed 2,500 km (1,500 mile) border with Afghanistan and would hopefully be accomplished by September, he stated.

He additionally stated Pakistan was prepared to interact in direct dialogue with arch-rival India as soon as Jammu and Kashmir statehood was restored, which New Delhi in 2019 break up into territories.

“We’re two atomic powers that can’t, shouldn’t go right into a direct battle. It might be suicidal,” Qureshi stated.

However he stated he had no plans to fulfill together with his Indian counterpart who can be within the United Arab Emirates this week.

Prime intelligence officers from India and Pakistan held secret talks in Dubai in January in a brand new effort to calm army stress over the disputed Himalayan area of Kashmir, sources have informed Reuters.

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