Saturday February 24, 2024

Taliban ready to meet Imran

July 26, 2019

DOHA: Afghan Taliban on Thursday stated if they were invited by Pakistan, they would travel to Islamabad and meet Prime Minister Imran Khan.The announcement from the Taliban came after PM Imran Khan’s statement in Washington that he would meet the Taliban and convince them for a meeting with Afghan government.

Talking to BBC via telephone from Doha, where the movement has established a political office, Taliban Spokesperson Sohail Shaheen said if they are given a formal invitation by Pakistan, they would visit. We often visit regional countries and would surely go there because Pakistan is our neighbour and Muslim country,” he said. Peace in Afghanistan topped PM Imran’s maiden US visit and President Donald Trump hailed Pakistan’s support in achieving peace in the troubled country.

When asked to comment on criticism that they are Pakistan’s proxy, Shaheen said those who wanted to create problems for Taliban would continue to say so. “We have divided the issue in two parts, external and internal,” he said.

He said, “In first phase, we are holding parleys with the foreign forces which are in final stages and in second phase, we shall hold talks with all the stakeholders and the Afghan government can also become part of it.”

The prime minster in his interview with Fox News on Monday said, “A good news expected in 48 hours on two foreigners held hostage in Afghanistan.” The spokesperson said he could not comment on it but they always look for a prisoners’ swap so that some of their arrested members are also released.

Talking to the members of the US Congress, the PM said that Pakistan was trying its level best to bring Taliban to the negotiating table and a significant achievement has been made in this regard. He, however, said it was not an easy task. He said the entire country including the army and security forces are on the same page for the common objective of peaceful solution to the Afghan conflict.