Prominent Pakistani religious scholar visits Kabul

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The Islamic Emirate said that a delegation of Islamic Clerics of Pakistan led by Muhammad Taqi Usmani, a well-known Pakistani Islamic scholar, came to Kabul on Monday.

Bilal Karimi, deputy spokesman of the Islamic Emirate, stated that the 18-member delegation including the minister of borders and tribal affairs of Pakistan will discuss a range of issues with officials in Kabul.

“A delegation of the Islamic Clerics of Pakistan have come to Kabul, and it is clear that they will discuss a range of issues with the officials of the Islamic Emirate, it is still unclear which issues they will discuss and with whom they will meet,” Karimi said.

The Islamic Emirate’s officials did not provide information about this trip, but some sources in Pakistan said that the delegation would discuss the talks between the Pakistani government and the Tahreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

“The basic aim of the delegation is to solve the challenges which exist ahead of peace talks between the Pakistani Taliban and the presidential and security agencies of Pakistan,” said Tahir Khan, a journalist.

Meanwhile, analysts shared their views on the visit of the delegation of Islamic Clerics of Pakistan to Afghanistan.

“Besides the mediation between the Pakistani Taliban and the government of Pakistan, some economic and commercial issues and common problems between Afghanistan and Pakistan will also be discussed with this delegation,” said Mohammad Hassan Haqyar, political analyst.

“They have chosen a double policy, they do not recognize the Islamic Emirate, but they are attempting to show the world that they have control in Afghanistan,” said Ahmad Khan Andar, another political analyst.

Talks between the Tahreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the Pakistani government started a few months ago and both sides reached a ceasefire for an undetermined time.

Meanwhile, a grand Jirga of 50 people arrived in Kabul on Wednesday morning to attend the ongoing negotiations between the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the government of Pakistan, a Pakistan news agency reported.

According to the report, the Prime Minister Mullah Hassan Akhund also met with the two sides.

“The tribal elder of Pakistan and other important figures are in Kabul. The Jirga will assist in talks going on between the Pakistan government institutions and TTP,” said Tahir Khan, a Pakistani government official.

The talks are said to be focusing on the extension of a ceasefire, the implementation of Shariah law, release of TTP prisoners and the return of the tribal areas to their previous state.

“Pakistan had good relations with the Afghan Taliban before and now as well. The Pakistani Taliban has relations with the Afghan Taliban,” said Shir Hassan Hassan, a political analyst.

“Now, there is this drama of negotiations under the title of peace, they (Pakistan) want to show the world that the Afghan Taliban has relations with the Pakistani Taliban,” said Azizi Marij, a military analyst.

The Islamic Emirate has yet to comment on this.

After the arrival of more than 50 ethnic leaders from seven Pakistani tribal regions in Kabul, TTP issued a statement, urging the Pakistani government to withdraw its soldiers from the tribal areas to negotiate a ceasefire. TTP also sought the entire liberation of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s tribal areas from the Pakistani army.

“They want the release of all their prisoners (102 prisoners). They mentioned this at the beginning of the talks that include their elders. They also called for the reverse of the cases that have been forged against them,” said Tahir Khan, a Pakistani reporter.

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