Pakistan alone can’t bring peace to Afghanistan: experts

By Muhammad Hassan Khetab On Jun 25, 2015 – 20:54

KABUL (Pajhwok): Political experts on Thursday said informal talks between Afghan government and Taliban representatives might yield positive results but it was a fallacy that Pakistan alone could pave the ground for peace talks.

Despite large investments to bring about peace to Afghanistan during the past 13 years, no signs of progress are visible.

Former president Hamid Karzai traveled 21 times to Pakistan during his leadership to encourage Taliban militants in that country to join to the peace process, but all his attempts failed.

After the establishment of the national unity government in Kabul, the peace efforts with the Taliban have intensified, but both the sides failed in March to hold a comprehensive dialogue.

However, some Afghan officials and Taliban representatives held several rounds of meetings in China, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Norway during the past few months.

Political experts believe these informal meetings could help pave the ground for formal negotiations in the future.

Political expert Wahid Muzhda said both Afghan officials and the Taliban had their own goals and they were successful in sharing their views with each other.

He told Pajhwok Afghan News the Afghan officials who met with Taliban representatives during the informal meetings had been strong opponents of the rebels in the past but their differences resolved to some extent after the meetings.

He believed the informal talks could help facilitate formal negotiations with the Taliban in the future.

Another political expert Azizullah Obaid also said informal talks could help the two sides understand each other’s views of and open up new avenues of formal talks.

He called the government’s current peace policy as a failure and said the government should involve all regional countries in the peace process and come up with a clear strategy.

Pakistan, which has long been accused of supporting Taliban militants by Afghan officials, has also promised to convince Taliban for talks with the Afghan government, but that country is yet to take practical steps in this regard.

Pakistan’s national security and foreign affairs advisor Sartaj Aziz recently said Islamabad was in contact with the Taliban to pave the ground for formal talks.

He had claimed that Taliban leaders had recently met representatives of a government-sponsored peace council in China, but his claim was rejected by the Taliban leadership council, which disowned the meeting.

But political expert Wahid Muzhda said it was a false concept to focus on Pakistan to bring peace to Afghanistan.

“All regional countries should join hands in supporting the peace process, giving credit to Pakistan only will not help us.”

He said Pakistan wanted to achieve privileges by using such opportunities and that he did think Pakistan would bring real Taliban representatives to the negotiating table.

He said Pakistan in the past had also produced ineffective Taliban men for negotiations and similar attempts in future would also fail.


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