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Pak PM Imran Khan initiates talks with Taliban, calls for ‘inclusive Afghan government’ to ensure peace

New Delhi: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Saturday that he has started talks with the Taliban to ensure an inclusive Afghanistan government that includes Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks.

It comes a day after SCO members sought representation for all ethnic, religious and political groups in the new system.

Read also | Afghanistan’s humanitarian situation ‘extremely desperate’: UN officials urge countries to accept refugees

After the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in mid-August, it promised an “inclusive” government that represents the country’s complex ethnic makeup. However, there are no Hazara members and no women in the recently announced 33-member interim cabinet.

Pakistan PM Imran Khan wrote on Twitter: “After MTGS (meetings) with leaders of Afghanistan’s neighbors in Dushanbe and especially after lengthy discussions with Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon, I have set up a meeting to involve Tajiks. For an inclusive Afghan government, talks have been initiated with the Taliban, Hazaras and Uzbeks”.

“After 40 years of conflict, this inclusiveness will ensure peace and a stable Afghanistan, which is in the interest of not only Afghanistan but also the region,” he said.

Addressing the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit on Friday, Imran Khan had said that “the Taliban must fulfill the promises made for an inclusive political structure, where all ethnic groups are represented. This is Afghanistan.” It is important for the stability of the country,” news agency PTI reported.

He stressed that it is important to ensure respect for rights while ensuring that Afghanistan will never again be made a safe haven for terrorists.

SCO leaders issued a joint declaration on Friday at the end of the bloc’s annual summit in Tajikistan, where they voiced support for a free, democratic and peaceful Afghanistan, free from terrorism, war and drugs.

“Member states believe that it is important to have an inclusive government in Afghanistan, with representatives from all ethnic, religious and political groups in Afghan society.”

The statement apparently refers to the Taliban’s interim government, which is currently dominated by high-profile members of the insurgent group, which includes at least 14 members who are on the UN Security Council’s blacklist of terrorism.

Pakistan’s involvement in Afghanistan

The Taliban is believed to be dominated by Pakistan and played a key role in their peace talks with the US that resulted in the 2020 Doha Agreement.

Pakistan’s involvement in the situation in Afghanistan attracted further attention as its powerful intelligence chief, Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed, in a surprise move, was gunned down in Kabul on 4 September, while the Taliban were trying to finalize and establish a government in Afghanistan. was fighting for.

A delegation of senior Pakistani officials led by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief held discussions with the Taliban leadership.

The visit of the ISI chief was significant as it was the first high-level visit by a Pakistani official after the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul.

The previous Afghan government, led by President Ashraf Ghani, often accused Pakistan of providing military aid to the Taliban, a charge Islamabad denied.

Making swiftly unexpected progress, the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan as it entered Kabul on August 15, two weeks before a full withdrawal of US troops that ended by the end of the month after a two-decade-long war. .

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country as the Taliban demanded a change of power at the gates of Kabul.

Meanwhile, thousands of Afghan citizens and foreigners have also sought refuge in various countries to escape the ultra-Orthodox Taliban regime, resulting in a humanitarian crisis.

(with agency input)

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