Sun, 16 May 2021

Kabul [Afghanistan], December 28 (ANI): Peace and security will not come to Afghanistan until the issue of Pakistan's relentless disposition to meddle in Afghanistan's affairs is properly addressed, said Australian professor William Maley on Monday.

"A key issue to pursue -- the real elephant in the room - remains the critical support that the Afghan Taliban receive from Pakistan and specifically from the Pakistan military," Maley said.

This comes after a series of videos surfaced showing senior Taliban leaders meeting their followers and Taliban fighters in Pakistan.

In the videos, it was seen that Taliban deputy leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the head of the Taliban political office, was holding a briefing with the Taliban cadre on the ongoing peace negotiations in Doha and acknowledging the presence of the Taliban's top leadership in Pakistan.

Reacting to the videos, Afghanistan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, "The presence of Taliban leaders in Pakistan clearly violates Afghanistan's national sovereignty".

Afghanistan has also urged Islamabad "not to allow its territory to be used by insurgents and elements who insist on continuing the war and bloodshed".

"Meaningful peace and security will not come to Afghanistan until the issue of Pakistan's relentless disposition to meddle in Afghanistan's affairs is properly addressed, and it is wishful thinking to believe otherwise,"Professor asserted that Pakistan needs to mend its ways.

The Australian professor and author said that Kabul is currently under siege adding that the 'new Afghanistan' that has developed over the last two decades is facing an unprecedented attack.

"These atrocities have come in the midst of a so-called 'peace process'. Yet if the aim of the process was to bring peace and security, something has plainly gone horribly wrong. To find agreements as flawed as the 29 February US-Taliban deal, one has to go to the Munich Agreement of September 1938, the January 1973 Paris Agreement on Vietnam, or the Arusha Accords on Rwanda of August 1993, which were hailed as triumphs at the time but now have few if any defenders," he said.

The professor stated that with the Afghan peace process had been paused, "it pays to reflect on why the process has unravelled", and what other steps might best be pursued from this point.

Pakistan is using Taliban as a "tool" for its dominance in Afghanistan under the pretext of strategic depth, said former Pakistan senator Afrasiab Khattak, adding that the terror group's approach towards the peace process has remained unchanged as it favours violence in the country.

The UN Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team to the 1988 Sanctions Committee, which oversees sanctions on the Taliban, in its 2019 report had acknowledged that nearly 5,000 terrorists belonging to Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, which is based in Pakistan, were active in Kunar and Nangarhar provinces of Afghanistan alone. (ANI)

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