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Pakistan had no choice but to rehabilitate TTP members after Taliban takeover in Afghanistan: Imran

By News Desk
March 14, 2023

KARACHI: Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman Imran Khan said on Monday that after the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, Pakistan had no choice but to rehabilitate members of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

During an interview with the BBC, he maintained that after their takeover, the Afghan Taliban had told Pakistan to take TTP members back as they were Pakistanis who had shifted to Afghanistan. He claimed that the number of such people was 30,000 to 40,000, of whom 5,000 to 6,000 were militants.

Khan said rehabilitating such people was the only option for Pakistan as it could not incarcerate 40,000 people in jails. “What other options we had? Should we have killed all of them?”When the interviewer asked the PTI chairman what he meant by rehabilitating such people, he answered that by rehabilitating he meant systematically making them part of the mainstream society with the help of the locals.

He said families belonging to the TTP were brought back to Pakistan, but they were not properly rehabilitated, due to which problems emerged. Khan further said that during last summer when the PTI was ruling Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, issues arose due to the TTP’s comeback. He said the then KP govt tried to take up the matter with the federal government, but the latter gave no response.He was of the view that the rulers should hold talks with the TTP to avoid conflict. He said that in case the negotiations failed, armed operation would unfortunately be the only choice left.