In another bizarre attempt to destabilise Afghanistan and pitch it in a renewed civil-strife, the outrageous Islamic State carried out a suicide attack at a Shia Muslims mosque on Friday in Kunduz. BBC has confirmed IS staking claim to the mayhem. More than 60 people are killed and hundreds injured in what seems to be a preplanned attempt to further the breach between Taliban and the minority community. The fact that the Taliban 2.0 set-up has been kind to Shias, in contrary to their previous rule, has inadvertently acted as a goodwill. This is what apparently warranted a conspiracy attack in Kunduz’s Said Abad mosque. It is the third devastation since the Taliban took over on August 15 this year. It brings to fore the indispensability of beefing up security and intelligence gathering, as well as setting up of a more broadened dispensation to promote harmony and seek the much-desired international recognition.
The bloodiest assault since coalition forces decamped should prompt the Taliban leadership to make a checklist of priorities. The first and foremost is taking out a host of militias that are undermining the fruits of liberty and obstructing nation-building. The onus is also on the United States and other western allies to supplement the Taliban with intelligence briefs to cleanse the war-shattered country of al-Qaeda, ISIS, the TTP and the new irritant called IS-Khorasan. The mysterious slipping in of ISIS from Iraq and Syria into Afghanistan was owing to intelligence failure of Americans, and now they should do their bit to ensure peace and stability in the region.
A deep calculus points out that Kunduz bloodbath has a realpolitik connotation, too. The IS atrocity came just a day after the State Department confirmed that its diplomats would undertake the first in-person talks with Taliban, since the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. Likewise, Moscow too invited a delegation to smoothen recognition issues. The Taliban are in need of exhibiting far-sightedness while dealing with the unrest at home, and at the same time walking extra miles to oblige the major powers for the desired acknowledgment. A sense of acumen on the part of the Taliban is irresistibly desired.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 10th, 2021.
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