The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman has advised US President Donald Trump to find a political solution in Afghanistan by engaging the country’s neighbours and negotiating with the Taliban rather than sending more troops to the war-torn country.
“Have a dialogue with Taliban and simultaneously withdraw US troops… the stated policy of killing the enemy is what they have been doing till now,” Imran told the CNN on Thursday.
The conflict that began in October 2001 as a hunt for the 9/11 attackers has turned into a vexed effort to keep Afghanistan’s divided and corruption-hindered democracy alive amid a brutal Taliban insurgency.
The PTI chief asked the Trump administration how additional troops could fulfill their objectives when "the mightiest NATO forces" could not do so by "killing the enemy" in Afghanistan.
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Announcing the deployment of thousands of more troops in Afghanistan On August 22, Trump lambasted Pakistan for harbouring “agents of chaos, violence, and terror,” saying the US could “no longer be silent about Pakistan’s safe havens for terrorist organisations”.
Imran deplored the statement, saying every Pakistani felt hurt and humiliated as Pakistan collaborated after 9/11 in US War on Terror and lost many precious lives.
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“By joining the US War on Terror, we lost some 70,000 people. Eighty per cent of the tribal people were rendered homeless and suddenly we have to hear this,” Imran said.
Asked if Trump stopped civil and military aid to Pakistan, the PTI chief said it would be good for the country. “I’d recommend we could be better off without the aid as this aid has been very costly to us,” he said.