Thursday, August 13

My, my, Kabul has been very quiet since Ghani went on TV to denounce Pakistan's role in terrorism

Bravo, Dr Abdullah 

On Monday August 10, the same day that President Ashraf Ghani gave his thunderous televised speech, the Chief Executive Officer of Afghanistan, Abdullah Abdullah, also spoke about Pakistan's perfidy:
Afghanistan's Chief Executive of the National Unity Government (NUG), Abdullah Abdullah, on Monday said there has been no sign of Pakistan's cooperation regarding Afghanistan's war on terror nor with peace talks initiatives in recent months.
He told a session of the Council of Ministers (CoM) that Pakistani officials say that Afghanistan's enemy is Pakistan's enemy, but asked what enemy commits crimes here and then holds meetings in Pakistan.
On the subject of the Taliban's recent meetings in Pakistan, he said such acts do not leave Pakistan in a good light and instead shows up their insincerity.
"As the Chief Executive of the NUG, I don't have any words or sentences that proves there is cooperation by Pakistan with us," Abdullah said.
See this Express Tribune report for more quotes from Abdullah's speech.    

Then, yesterday, Rahim Faiez at The Associated Press reported:
KABUL -- Afghanistan's intelligence agency claimed on Wednesday that Pakistan was involved in last week's attacks on Kabul that killed almost 50 people and wounded hundreds. 
Hassib Sediqi, the spokesman for the National Directorate of Security, said that Afghan authorities have confirmed "Pakistani military interference" in the attacks last Friday.
"Special circles of the Pakistani military were behind all those attacks," Sediqi said. He said that the Pakistanis were working through the Haqqani network, one of the most vicious militant groups in Afghanistan.
"Suicide bombers are receiving their training in Pakistan, there are factories in Pakistan that are making bombs and explosives, which are used to kill and wound civilians in Afghanistan," Sediqi said. 
He claimed "it has been proved that the Taliban" are not led by Afghans but are getting "their orders from the Pakistani military officers."
That last is exactly why President Ghani, in his speech on Monday, referred to the Taliban not as terrorists or militants but as mercenaries.  That was calling a spade a spade. 

Also on August 12 came the announcement that Afghan officials were going to visit Pakistan for talks.  From Voice of America:
Afghan officials say that a high-level delegation led by Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani will visit Pakistan on Thursday to demand the neighbor uproot anti-Afghanistan militant bases there.
Sayed Zafar Hashimi, a presidential spokesman, told VOA the Afghan acting defense minister and the country’s spy chief will also accompany Rabbani in what he says will be “comprehensive” discussions with Pakistani counterparts.
“We would demand that Pakistan must move against groups holding gatherings inside Pakistan and declaring war against the people of Afghanistan,” he said.
But on Monday both Ghani and Abdullah said that they're no longer buying into Pakistan's game of playing interlocutor; they said they don't need or want Pakistan's government to be party to their negotiations with the Taliban. In this they're entirely correct. But as to whether the Taliban will be able to negotiate without Pakistan directing them at the talks -- that looks unlikely at this point.


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