Wednesday, August 4, 2021
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Watch: Pakistan minister meets Taliban leaders like old friends in an effort to revive peace talks with the US, exchanges hugs and smiles

Though Pakistan vehemently denies the charges of bolstering terror groups on its land, the recent bonhomie on display between Pakistani leaders and Talibani convoy reinforces the long-held belief that Pakistan continues to use terror elements as an integral part of its foreign policy.

The finance minister of Pakistan Shah Mehmood Qureshi was seen warming up to the Taliban envoy ahead of their meeting in Islamabad. A top-level Taliban delegation held discussions with Pakistani leadership in a bid to revive the Afghan peace which was halted after US President Donald Trump abruptly called off the talks with militant group as ‘dead’.

The Taliban’s co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar, who remained prisoner for eight years in a Pakistani prison, was greeted with hugs and smiles by Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and spy chief Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed.

Pakistan remains one of the few countries to acknowledge the rule of the Taliban regime, and its hazy military establishment, particularly the surveillance arm-Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), is widely believed to be a supporter of the militant insurgency group in Afghanistan.

Pakistan has been passionately facilitating peace talks between Taliban and Washington in Qatar over the past year attempting to arrive at an agreement for withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan in return for various security assurances from the insurgents.

The two warring sides- the US and Taliban were almost on the verge of signing a peace accord and subsequent withdrawal of US troops from the strife-region but the process was abruptly declared dead following violence from Taliban.

After the talks were called off, Taliban warned escalation and intensified attacks on US troops, but both the parties kept the negotiation doors open. Qureshi said said, “Pakistan wants the talks to resume to iron out the path for a long-lasting, enduring peace and stability in Afghanistan.”

He further continued, “War is not a solution to any problems. Only through talks can we establish peace in Afghanistan.”

Though Pakistan vehemently denies the charges of bolstering terror groups on its land, the recent bonhomie on display between Pakistani leaders and Talibani convoy reinforces the long-held belief that Pakistan continues to use terror elements as an integral part of its foreign policy.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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