Pak bashing wouldn’t work

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THE Pakistan Foreign Office on Monday rejected as “irresponsible and baseless” the recently levelled allegations by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and warned that such statements could undermine mutual trust.

President Ghani had, in an interview to German magazine Der Spiegel, alleged that Pakistan operates an organized system of support for the Taliban insurgents, who receive logistics and financial support from there, besides carrying out recruitment.

Pakistan has gone out of the way to support peaceful resolution of the Afghan conflict but regrettably Kabul is persisting with its Pakistan-bashing just to shift the focus away from its own follies, failures and instances of rampant corruption that are at the core of continued instability in the neighbouring country.

The so-called Taliban bodies – Quetta Shura, Miramshah Shura and Peshawar Shura – that President Ghani has referred to, are things of the past and the situation changed entirely due to across-the-board and successful operations carried out by Pakistani defence forces against all militant outfits.

The timing of the allegations is of particular interest as it seems to be an attempt to undermine the peace talks at Doha that resumed due to enormous efforts by Pakistan.

The accusation comes a few days after a day-long visit of Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa to Kabul where he reiterated Pakistan’s support for the peace process emphasizing that “a peaceful Afghanistan means a peaceful region in general and a peaceful Pakistan in particular.”

Ghani also claimed that the Army Chief assured him Pakistan was not in favour of Taliban returning to power in Afghanistan.

Under these circumstances, one fails to understand why President Ghani launched a scathing attack against Pakistan. Whose interest is he serving by vitiating the atmosphere for peace talks?