WHAT happened at Tashkent is clear proof that Afghan President Ashraf Ghani was least interested in helping the peace process succeed and instead is adamant not to give up the habit of blaming Pakistan for ‘unfavourable’ developments in Afghanistan.
Speaking at the international conference on “Central and South Asia Regional Connectivity: Challenges and Opportunities”, he alleged that 10,000 militants sneaked into Afghanistan from Pakistan to create unrest there.
Ghani’s outburst against Pakistan notwithstanding, the history will not forgive him for inflicting irreparable losses to his own country just for the sake of sticking to power at all costs as it was mainly because of his Government’s non-cooperative behaviour that almost all, otherwise, promising initiatives aimed at restoration of durable peace in the war-torn country failed.
It was because of his lust for power that the Murree peace process got derailed and the Doha process did not produce the desired result in a timely manner leading to complications that are now difficult to sort out.
Therefore, Prime Minister Imran Khan did well by giving a robust response to Ashraf Ghani telling Kabul to consider Pakistan as a “partner of peace” rather than blaming it for the ongoing unrest, which he said was the “outcome of using a military solution by the United States instead of a political one”.
The Prime Minister had a point as Pakistan has already lost 70,000 precious lives in the war against terror – a phenomenon caused by conflict in Afghanistan – and it would still be the most affected country if the situation worsens there after withdrawal of foreign troops.
Afghanistan has landed into a chaotic situation because initially, along with his American masters, President Ghani preferred use of force and vehemently opposed resolution of the problem through dialogue apparently due to the fear that the peaceful resolution would obviously mean sharing of power which he was not ready to do.
Pakistan had long been advocating the cause of peace in Afghanistan and provided practical proof of its sincerity for the cause by bringing Taliban repeatedly to the negotiating table.
Now that due to the dilly-dallying tactics of President Ghani, Taliban are scoring rapid victories and Pakistan has very limited leverage on Taliban and their spokesperson also made it clear by declaring that Islamabad cannot dictate them.
As for allegations of crossing of ten thousand militants from Pakistan side to Afghanistan, Pakistan is effectively managing the border – thanks to its timely border management project that was also opposed by the Ghani Government.
ISI chief Lt. General Faiz Hameed has also shown mirror to President Ghani by pointing out that Pakistani security forces were being attacked at Pak-Afghan border, resulting in martyrdom of Pak defence forces personnel. In such a situation, blaming Pakistan for intrusion into Afghanistan was totally wrong.
In fact, indulging in a blame game at a time when there was dire need to create consensus for peaceful resolution of the longstanding crisis is nothing but disloyalty to the cause of peace in Afghanistan and the region.