Pakistan should take lead in recognizing Taliban Government

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Renowned speakers talk at a roundtable conference organized by an independent think tank from Islamabad, Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS) arguing that Pakistan should take lead in recognizing the government of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The roundtable conference was titled ‘Transformation of Taliban from militia to military; prospects, challenges, and implications for regional security.’ The speakers were also of the view that the building of the Afghan Army by the Taliban may not pose a threat to any regional country. The roundtable conference was addressed by Major General InamUlHaque (R) and Mr. Salman Javed Director General of Pak Afghan Youth Forum while Mr. Abdullah Khan Managing Director of PICSS chaired the conference. Apart from academia, the conference was also attended by diplomats from Saudi Arabia, France, Hungary, Japan, Iran, Azerbaijan, Romania, Iraq, and Palestine. The speakers discussed the ongoing transition of the Taliban militia into a regular Army.

Major General InamUlHaque (R) said that Pakistan should take lead in recognizing the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan as a legitimate ruler. He said that the west spent 69 billion dollars on building an Afghan Army which disappeared into thin air in the wake of the Taliban’s offensive. He said that Army Chief at that time General Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani had advised the Americans not to raise an Army like that otherwise, it would be counterproductive. The same happened eventually.

Director General Pak Afghan Youth Forum Mr. Salman Javed said that currently there are eight corps of the Afghan Army under the Taliban while they are operating Air Force too, though they do not have fighter jets as yet but have attack-helicopters. The overall form of the new Army is not clear and the chain of command is also not much visible. However, he was of the view that the new Army will be more like a counter-terrorism force than a standing Army. He said that it will take time to build a proper Army. Taliban have a quest to have cordial relations with Pakistan. The border skirmishes are mostly local issues and may not in the larger picture affect overall relations.”