Condemnation: TTP dialogue plans come unstuck, says PM

Published: September 23, 2013

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: 

A visibly upset Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced on Sunday that his government could no longer move ahead with the all parties conference-endorsed plan for talks with the Taliban following Sunday’s twin bombings in a Peshawar church.

“Such incidents do not augur well for negotiations,” he told reporters in London ahead of his flight to New York, where he is scheduled to attend the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly. “Unfortunately, because of this, the government is unable to move forward on what it had envisaged, on what it had wished for.”

At the same time, he instructed the authorities concerned to devise a new security plan for the worship places of the country’s religious minorities.

“We had proposed peace talks with the Taliban in good faith, and with the consent of all political parties… but unfortunately, because of this [attack] the government is unable to move forward on what it had envisaged, on what it had wished for,” he said.

Prime Minister Nawaz said those who carried out the gruesome attack had violated the tenets of Islam.

“Terrorists have no religion… targeting innocent people is against the teachings of Islam and all religions,” he said.

“Such cruel acts of terrorism reflect the brutality and inhumane mindset of the terrorists,” he added.

Terming those responsible for the attack ‘enemies of Pakistan’, the premier said the government will take action against extremist elements in the country after consulting all sides on the matter.

Earlier, before leaving Pakistan, Prime Minister Nawaz said he was going to the UN General Assembly in New York “as a leader of a responsible democratic nation”.

“We are a peaceful nation and want to enhance economic cooperation, trade and investment in Pakistan. I will share my vision of a progressive, democratic and developed Pakistan, which has the desire to live at peace with its neighbors,” he said in a statement ahead of his departure.

“I will meet world leaders and heads of states to improve economic, political and strategic relationships with them,” he added.

The 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly will be held from September 23 (today) to September 29. Prime Minister Nawaz will address the session on September 27.

In his address to the UN General Assembly, the premier will highlight Pakistan’s foreign policy guidelines and its point of view on different regional and international issues.

He will also hold bilateral meetings with several world leaders, including his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, on the sidelines of the General Assembly session.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 23rd, 2013.

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Reader Comments (33)

  • Asim
    Sep 23, 2013 - 9:53AM

    Well said PM… now i hope these words get transformed into action…

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  • vasan
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:07AM

    “We are a peaceful nation”
    Mr Nawas, This must be the joke of the day unless ofcourse you mean “We are a nation full of pieces”

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  • Mir
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:20AM

    Please negotiate with the terrorist , stop planning for youth development . If no youth is left?
    There is no two ways, you are with the people of Pakistan or with terrorists.

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  • Fahad
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:22AM

    Alas, just what the superpowers wanted…

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  • Khan
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:24AM

    @vasan:
    Way to troll, bet they’ll give u a bonus on that one.

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  • Ali
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:32AM

    We need to go ahead and carpet bomb the entire Waziristan.

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  • lalai
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:32AM

    My dear PM, condemning this brutal incident in the softest possible words and leaving the country in the midst of crisis for a foreign visit tells a lot about your resolve and commitment.
    People of Pakistan, may God be with you.

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  • Saad
    Sep 23, 2013 - 10:41AM

    @vasan:
    You are an Indian. I would advise you to not to troll around topics like these.

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  • Mj
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:12AM

    @Fahad:
    Oh, you mean Saudi Arabia?

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  • Fahad Hafeez
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:12AM

    Sadly it was heard that most of the Taliban groups were on with the negotiations while only a few had opposed it and were directly resposible for the attacks done , the others that are up for th peace talks should be talked with and peace done with them while the ones who opposed should be illiminated as they are the major issue ! . just my 2 cents. check the video.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10202065469748307

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  • Neha khan
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:13AM

    dair aye durust aye ..

    TTP neither wants peace nor any negotiation, they jus want to destabilize the country, want to make sufferers to suffer more. TTP wants army to back off from swat and waziristan areas.they dont at all want to negotiate and one cant talk to a person who is not even ready to negotiate..

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  • abc
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:16AM

    We need to come clean and tell the nation truth about whats going on in our country. There is no place on earth which can be left ungoverned and no miscreant can be left to roam freely. “Don’t lie that much as it appears truth”

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  • Middlist
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:22AM

    Didn’t know a whole nation can be manipulated this easy !!!!
    From the date of APC till now, why have the Taliban not been contacted ???
    Can any one tell me exact no of taliban factions, there locations and their reason for fighting ??
    Pak army is operating in tribal areas for last 6-7 years now, why is there no PEACE yet ???
    We haven’t given PEACE a chance yet??
    Just see the frequency of attacks after APC and level of targets !!!!
    OR else
    Get Some B12s and erase the entire tribal belt from the face of earth….

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  • Faisal
    Sep 23, 2013 - 11:43AM

    Talks are the only option in the light of 10 years of war. If we continue fight, there will be no end and more sympathizers will emerge and more radicals. In case of talks, the real stakeholders from Taliban will emerge and the terrorists will be isolated.

    Therefore, my humble suggestion to Government is to expedite the peace talks with “our people” as per APC resolution.

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  • Muhammad Ahsan KHAN
    Sep 23, 2013 - 12:27PM

    “security plan for the worship places of the country’s religious minorities”

    It is not only worship places, but they are insecure every where in Pakistan..

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  • Ali
    Sep 23, 2013 - 1:07PM

    @Mj:
    No…America

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  • Acha Bacha
    Sep 23, 2013 - 1:11PM

    Wake up PM. What are you doing in UN. Come back and control your country. It is going down the drain.Recommend

  • BlackJack
    Sep 23, 2013 - 1:40PM

    Good statement – hope they follow it up with some action as well. The government needs to also invest in defeating the narrative that Taliban wants peace – this is almost as important as defeating the Taliban itself.

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  • Afridi
    Sep 23, 2013 - 1:51PM

    Dont waste time in negotiation plz, we are not weaker than Sri Lanka so if they can t fight against tamil tigers so we can also eliminate these killers. Start a massive military operation against them but that should be a real operation not just hide n seek.

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  • aaaaa
    Sep 23, 2013 - 2:38PM

    @lalai:

    He went to the UN to attend a GA session before the attack happened. Do you realise why thats important or are you just senile?

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  • mithidada
    Sep 23, 2013 - 2:40PM

    If only a few factions of the Taliban are against peace talks and, by implication, perpetrating such acts, why do we not hear the majority of the factions who favour talks coming out and criticising these attacks and saying they are not a part of them?

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  • zara
    Sep 23, 2013 - 3:01PM

    “Unfortunately, because of this, the government is unable to move forward on what it had envisaged, on what it had wished for.”

    Dear P.M Ohhh so it was the reason behind blast :) . Dirty Politics

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  • Hammad
    Sep 23, 2013 - 3:52PM

    @Fahad Hafeez: You have been watching Ansar Abbasi too much. Whichever groups were pro-peace should’ve condemned the attack on the church and the Maj. Gen. I doubt any pro-peace group is strong enough to even squeak in front of Hakimullah. If there are any ‘good’ ones, rest assured, they must already be in negotiations with the state and will be spared in the operations. Let’s take care of the anti-peace guys before we start talking to the pro-peace ones. Let’s hunt the ‘Indian agents’ down first, since they are ‘sabotaging’ the peace efforts.

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  • Rex Minor
    Sep 23, 2013 - 4:10PM

    Mr Nawaz Sharif has a point! Therefore, he should tender his resignation since he was electe on the slogan of talks with TTP and the end of Drone operations in waziristan. He has accepted his failure and therefore has no mor mandate to hold the office of the PM.

    Rex Minor

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  • SK
    Sep 23, 2013 - 4:11PM

    Dear Mr PrimeMinister
    There is no other solution other than to deal with Taliban with iron hand. How many more carnage would convince you of this simple equation. We are much stronger militarily than Sri Lanka a relatively small nation.If Sri-lankans can obliterate the LTT we can deal with Taliban too . Let’s seal the Afghan border and go for the final and ultimate eradication of these rodents and pest , this nation is right behind you and our brave army.

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  • Kay
    Sep 23, 2013 - 5:07PM

    Nawaz sharif is just passing time. he has no power.

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  • obvious
    Sep 23, 2013 - 5:42PM

    Step 1 – Secure borders, humanely and legally repatriate ALL illegal immigrants over a defined 2 year period (as Iran did)

    Step 2 – Use NADRA and CPLC Karachi to identify illegally obtained Pakistan passports and ID cards and cancel them

    Step 3 – Have a nationwide de weaponisation campaign with no exceptions – people saying weapons are male jewellery should be told jewellery is for women

    Step 4 – Stringently enforce hate speech and incitement laws

    Step 5 – Ensure all citizens of Pakistan equal – get rid of “muslim” or “non-muslim” from passports and ID cards

    Step 6 – Increase judges salaries ten fold and provide them security so they make judgement free from fear or favor. Consciously appoint female judges and those from minorities

    Step 7 – Ensure Qaid e Azam’s speeches are comprehensively taught at school and their deepere meaning debated and understood

    Step 8 – Advise management of PSM, PIA and Pak Railways, that was the last bailout, they are no on their own, use the billions to invest in major infrastructure projects / stimulus that will encourage employment.

    Step 9 – referendum in FATA to facilitate their joining KPK and come under the laws of the land, or become a separate province under the laws of the land

    Step 10 – Nationwide campaign, especially in Karachi, to replace party flags, with national flags

    Pakistan has immense potentially. Lets not waste it.

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  • lkhan
    Sep 23, 2013 - 5:47PM

    Just as in Karachi where a plan against terrorism is being implemented, the PM must without delay put another such plan in place at the earliest to fight the taliban who threaten the existence of Pakistan with the extreme ideals that all are aware of. They can not get away with impunity, killing so many innocent lives, destroying properties, and a long etc. The armed forces must once and for all go for all terrorists without exception. Each day lost, the enemy of Pakistan that is the Taliban, get stronger. Their actions get bolder by the day. Pakistan does not deserve such suffering or the resulting loss to its economy (FDI or tourism as examples). Pakistanis must demand from their government action against this terrible, inhumane menace.

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  • Sep 23, 2013 - 5:56PM

    We strongly condemn the attacks on Christians in Peshawar. Islam doesn’t allow anyone for such activity…

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  • Rex Minor
    Sep 23, 2013 - 8:23PM

    @Afridi:
    Have a try!Being an Afridi,try to enter the Waziri territory? Or stop Afridi boasting.

    Rex Minor

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  • Raja Islam
    Sep 24, 2013 - 1:31AM

    Mr. Prime Minister, the time for talks is over. Get up and do something. It is time for you to uphold the writ of the law and take care of the Taliban once and for all. If you are unable to provide safety and security to the residents of the state, then you should resign and go home to Saudi Arabia.

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  • SK
    Sep 24, 2013 - 6:07AM

    @mithidada:
    Just let this nation know which group want peace and which wants war. So that the security forces can go after the one who aren’t for peace. Can you identify the belligerent from peace loving. Until that becomes clear all Talibans are same. These factions know that if they came up with clear political stand for peace the other belligerent groups who wants to impose their crude agendas may break away from them and lead to internal conflict with in. Thus triggering the demise of Talibanism.

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  • mithidada
    Sep 24, 2013 - 6:00PM

    @SK:
    I was replying to the comments of Faisal. I personally do not think there is any group that wants peace and I agree with you fully that the final and only solution is to go for the total eradication of these extremist militants.
    However, I doubt if the entire nation would be behind such action, much as you and I would support it. The supporters of the PTI and other religious parties would raise a hue and cry and that is what, I think, is holding both the government and the army back. There may even be some among the PML-N who may not support all out action. Till there is across the board support, it is very difficult to take military action and that lack of across the board support is what has resulted in past military actions not being as successful as they could have been. I do not think that the PTI, the JUI-F or JI would ever support military action, no matter what. And that is Pakistan’s dilemma.

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