close
Monday February 06, 2023

Kabul brokers peace talks between Islamabad, TTP

Zabihullah said talks were held in Kabul between the government of Pakistan and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan in the mediation of the Islamic Emirate

By AFP
May 19, 2022
Zabihullah Mujahid. Photo: AFP/File
Zabihullah Mujahid. Photo: AFP/File

KABUL: The Afghan Taliban said on Wednesday that they were hosting peace talks between Pakistan officials and a Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant group that has battled Islamabad for over a decade.

Since the Afghan Taliban returned to power last year, Islamabad has increasingly complained of attacks by the TTP, especially along the mountainous border with Afghanistan. The TTP is a home-grown movement but shares common roots with the new rulers of Kabul, who Pakistan has claimed permit its fighters to stage assaults from Afghan soil.

"Talks were held in Kabul between the government of Pakistan and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan in the mediation of the Islamic Emirate," government spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said, using the self-styled name of Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.

"The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, in good faith, strives for a successful negotiation process and expects both sides to be tolerant and flexible," he said on Twitter. In a statement, the group also confirmed that "negotiations are underway" under the guidance of the Afghan Taliban.

A truce previously agreed for the Eidul Fitr will also be extended until May 30, the statement said. A militant source told AFP that "negotiations are held in Kabul in a positive atmosphere" but that it would be "premature to draw any conclusion".

Pakistan government officials have not yet commented on the talks. The official discussions may be an indication the Taliban are trying to smooth over rocky relations with neighbouring Pakistan.

The mountainous region between Afghanistan and Pakistan has long been a hive of militant activity, with the border becoming a source of friction since the Taliban reclaimed power in August. Islamabad has made repeated claims its forces have been targeted by fighters across the international boundary.

Comments