Pakistan a facilitator in Afghan peace process


Since President Joe Biden announced the speedy withdrawal of U.S troops from Afghanistan, which he revealed, would conclude by August 31, eyes are on situation in post withdrawal of the forces. It would also bring America’s longest war to an instant end weeks before the September 11 deadline Biden set this year. After spending almost 20 years in Afghanistan an American President is of the view that the people of the country needs to think about the future of their country. He said, “We did not go to Afghanistan to nation build. It’s the right and the responsibility of Afghan people alone to decide their future and how they want to run their country.” The withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan has far-reaching consequences particularly for the neighbouring countries. As foreign forces continue their pullback, Afghanistan seems to be slipping into chaos in the absence of a political settlement among the stakeholders. Pakistan, which has played an essential role in bringing the Taliban to the negotiating table is, obviously cannot guarantee the success of this peace process. Recently while talking to a local television DG ISPR Maj Gen Babar Iftikhar stated that, “Pakistan is only a facilitator of the Afghan peace process not a guarantor. Pakistan has no favourites among the Afghan stakeholders. The Afghans have to select their leadership. In case of any impasse, we can support. Pakistan has made all-out efforts but it cannot go beyond its limits. Afghans have the aptitude and competence to choose their future passage. As far as Pakistan is concerned, it has made honest efforts for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process”. Obviously, Pakistan has suffered immensely amid conflict in Afghanistan. It is hosting close to 3 million Afghan refugees. Now it is time to revamp the policy and situation for better consequences. Pakistan has built 90 percent of a fence along its disputed 2,500 km (1,500 mile) border with Afghanistan and would hopefully complete it by September this year. Still there are chances of civil war in Afghanistan and is the utmost need now to convince all the stakeholders to sit and talk and this responsibility does not only belongs to Pakistan.

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