India’s bid to isolate Pakistan, following the Pulwana terror attack and the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) pre-emptive action, threatened US-Afghan ‘delicate’ peace talks. The US is presently having ‘talks’ with the Taliban to end more than 17 years of war on terrorism in Afghanistan.
Last week, the US officials had been very much publicly engaged in trying to cool the India and Pakistan confrontation which was on the verge of turning into a full scale war. Sources in the US revealed that Pakistan had ‘privately warned on Afghanistan’. Reuters highlighted Pakistani officials saying their ability to support Afghan peace talks could be in jeopardy in the event of a full-blown crisis. A US source said Pakistan will stop being a facilitator. They will stop the pressure they are applying on the Taliban, said sources.
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Tensions between India and Pakistan shot up after Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), a Pakistan-based militant group, claimed responsibility for the February 14 terror attack in Pulwama, Kashmir. While Islamabad denied having any role in the incident, India accused Pakistan for harbouring terrorists.
Pakistan has long used militant groups as tool to influence or destabilize its neighbors – Afghanistan and India. South Asian geopolitical analysts say this has locked the countries across disputed colonial borders in a historical mistrust. And this has periodically turned into covert and conventional wars. Diplomats are of the opinion that if US pushes Pakistan too hard to combat the militant groups, Islamabad would wind up its support for the peace process.
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Sami Yousafzai, a veteran Afghan journalist, said “Numerous problems surround the US-Afghan peace talks- notably the absence of the Afghan government which the militant group considers illegitimate.” Yousafzai explained that the current break in talks was not because of India – Pakistan tensions. If that was the case, they would have simply cancelled the talks.