PAK-Afghan relationship is at present at the lowest ebb. Everyone knows that Ashraf Ghani’s success in the presidential elections was warmly welcomed in Pakistan. The people in Pakistan were of the opinion that Ashraf Ghani would try his utmost to bring the two countries more close to each other but Mr. Ghani did altogether otherwise. He is so unfortunate that he could not bring peace even to his own country.
International analysts are pointing towards a rapidly increasing violence in Afghanistan and to the fast growing Taliban influence as well. At so many places the Talban are directly running the government affairs instead of the Afghan government. There is a very visible political conflict and turmoil in spite of Afghan NUG’s claim of peace in the country.
In the beginning days of Ashraf Ghani government a very clear situation of conflict and confrontation was being noticed between Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah but now the first Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum has also joined this war as the third party. Parliament is hosting different ethnic rivalries and as a result of this rivalry seven ministers have been impeached. The Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani was also among the impeached ones. There is a situation of political anarchy and chaos in Afghanistan and the leaders are washing their ‘dirty linen’ in the public by accusing one another of nepotism and ethnicity.
Analysts are of the opinion that after Trump’s victory in the US elections Afghan political leaders are under pressure and stress because of the expected change in US policy towards Afghanistan. The Washington Post said commenting upon the fears and apprehensions of the Afghan leaders, ‘The tensions have resurfaced just as the United States, a mainstay of Afghan defense and economic aid for years, has elected a new president with different priorities and no investment in Afghanistan’s success. Many Afghans fear President-elect Donald Trump may withdraw the 10,000 U.S. troops that President Obama kept here to help Afghan security forces take over the anti-insurgent fight.’
The most shameful issue which Afghanistan is facing nowadays is that of the First Vice President General Abdul Rashid Dostum. He is under severe criticism for abducting and sexually exploiting former Jowzjan governor Ahmad Eshchi. According to details this incident allegedly took place somewhere in the second week of the last December. Ahmad Eshchi accused that the vice-president General Abdul Rashid Dostum and ten other men assaulted him while he was forcibly kept at the former warlord’s residence for five days. Though Gen Dostum has denied the accusation, describing it as a ‘provocation’ but this allegation has given birth to a very serious controversy in the Afghan political circles.
Pamela Constable, the reporter of the Washington Post said in a report commenting on the political war-like situation in Afghanistan, “The revolt in parliament is only one symptom of the disarray. In recent weeks, several aides to President Ashraf Ghani have publicly criticized his administration, while opposition leaders are plotting to divide it from the outside. Long-promised elections are still far off, and public confidence is weakening.” But instead of paying attention to this serious situation of conflict and confrontation in Afghanistan, President Ashraf Ghani is spending all his time and all his vigour in promoting terrorism and patronizing terrorists in Pakistan. Let us see how he responds to Pakistan’s surgical strikes in the areas across the Afghan border.
—The writer is freelance columnist based in Multan.