Tuesday January 25, 2022

Issue of talks with TTP echoes in Senate

November 11, 2021
Issue of talks with TTP echoes in Senate

ISLAMABAD: The issue of the government’s negotiations with the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan echoed in the Senate on Wednesday, as ex-chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani insisted that deciding about the negotiations with the terror outfits was the mandate of Parliament.

Speaking on a point of public importance, Senator Rabbani asserted that the government had no mandate to hold such negotiations. He pointed out that a joint sitting was summoned and an hour later postponed. “All the decisions on national security are neither being taken from the platform of Parliament nor it is being taken into confidence,” he noted.

Rabbani said Parliament was not taken into confidence on the decision to give air corridor to the United States and the information came from the US Congress. Likewise, he noted that the information on starting negotiations with the TTP came to light during prime minister's interview with a Turkish television.

He added when Prime Minister Imran Khan talked about the negotiations with the TTP and after that there was a statement on ceasefire but there were a plethora of incidents during this period and security forces personnel were attacked and they lost lives during the so-called ceasefire.

“Today, again, it is being stated that a ceasefire has been observed but if negotiations are to be held, then Parliament should be taken into confidence and if such an exercise is held outside, then this will not be acceded to by Parliament,” he maintained.

“The government has no mandate to hold negotiations with terrorist organisations, as it is the mandate of Parliament. If it empowers the government, only then it can hold negotiations,” he emphasised.

During his point of public importance, some treasury senators rose and kept speaking without having the floor. PTI Senator Dost Muhammad regretted that despite raising the issue of landmines in Waziristan in the Senate through a calling attention notice, which injured and killed innocent women, children, besides damaging livestock, the government appeared totally unmoved. He also complained that he had raised a written question with the Ministry of Interior, which responded by saying that no reply was received.

A National Party senator raised the issue of strike by students of the Balochistan University against the disappearance of two students from the university two days back. He said that the incidents of missing persons and human rights were assuming alarming proportions while negotiations were being held with TTP. The House will now meet again on Friday morning.