Afghan Taliban Wants Pakistan To Bear The Cost Of Disarming TTP Militants — Report - Eastern Mirror
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Afghan Taliban wants Pakistan to bear the cost of disarming TTP militants — Report

By PTI Updated: Feb 25, 2023 7:21 pm

The Taliban-led government in Afghanistan has for the first time proposed to Pakistan that it should bear the cost of disarming and rehabilitating the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) members and their families numbering more than 30,000 from the Pak-Afghan border areas, according to a media report.

This was revealed during the National Apex Committee meeting chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Friday to formulate a strategy to deal with the rising incidents of terror attacks in Pakistan, according to The Express Tribune newspaper.

The Afghan Taliban has said it is willing to disarm and relocate the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) militants and their families across the border but wants Islamabad to bear the cost of the proposed rehabilitation, the report said.

The meeting was attended by a raft of high-profile members from the political and military establishment.

Friday’s meeting comes after Defence Minister Khawaja Asif and the Director General of the country’s spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt. General Nadeem Anjum met the top brass of the Afghanistan Taliban regime in Kabul to share “irrefutable evidence” with them about the presence of TTP in the neighbouring country.

The Afghan interim government’s proposal includes disarming the TTP members and relocation of their families from the Pak-Afghan border, the report said.

However, the Afghan government has asked Pakistan to fund the proposal and bear the cost of rehabilitation of the TTP members, it said.

The meeting was informed that the Afghan Taliban made a similar proposal to China to address its concerns about the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM) in the restive Xinjiang province, the report said.

However, Pakistan is yet to respond to the Afghan Taliban’s idea as there is scepticism within the top brass that this proposal might not be feasible, the report said.

This is the first time that the Afghan Taliban has pitched this idea to Islamabad, the report said.

There are around 12,000 TTP militants in Afghanistan and with their families, that number surges to well beyond 30,000, it added.

Pakistan has been hit by a wave of terrorism, mostly in the country’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, but also in Balochistan, the Punjab town of Mianwali, which borders the restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and also in the Sindh province.

During the Apex Committee meeting held last month, Pakistan’s civil and military leadership decided to seek Afghan Taliban chief Haibuttallah Akhundzada’s intervention to control the TTP.

On January 30, a Taliban suicide bomber blew himself up during the afternoon prayers in a mosque in Peshawar, killing 101 people and injuring more than 200 others.

In November last year, the TTP called off an indefinite ceasefire agreed with the government in June 2022 and ordered its militants to carry out attacks on the security forces.

Pakistan hoped that the Afghan Taliban after coming to power would stop the use of their soil against Pakistan by expelling the TTP operatives, but they have apparently refused to do so at the cost of straining ties with Islamabad.

The TTP, set up as an umbrella group of several militant outfits in 2007, called off a ceasefire with the federal government and ordered its militants to stage terrorist attacks across the country.

The group, which is believed to be close to Al-Qaeda, has been blamed for several deadly attacks across Pakistan, including an attack on army headquarters in 2009, assaults on military bases, and the 2008 bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad.

The TTP has also orchestrated the heinous Army Public School attack in Peshawar in 2014, in which over 130 students were killed.

Islamabad, Feb. 25 (PTI)

By PTI Updated: Feb 25, 2023 7:21:04 pm
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