Talking to the TTP

The elections have been over for a while now and it is time to mould rhetoric into policy and achieve results.


Editorial June 20, 2013
Hopefully the PTI-led government in K-P realizes the mammoth task at hand. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

Despite the victory of a pro-peace coalition and its overtures to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), militancy and violence continues unabated in the province. The recent suicide bombing in Mardan, which killed dozens, including MPA Imran Khan Mohmand, is a strong statement by the TTP that their goals are not likely to disappear because of a change in the provincial government. This is the second member of the provincial assembly who has been murdered by a militant attack.



Efforts are underway to hold an All Parties Conference in the wake of this tragedy. Certain political parties have been highlighting the need to initiate talks with the TTP to secure peace in the province and the rest of the country. The efforts of the US to hold talks with the Afghan Taliban are being cited as a reference for holding negotiations with the TTP. Such comparisons are misleading and questionable. The TTP continues to reject the very basis of the Pakistani Constitution and routinely flouts federal and provincial laws. Moreover, with its sustained bombing of girls’ schools, it also undermines the state policy of providing education to all and delivering services to its citizens. Thus far, the TTP has relentlessly attacked Pakistani targets and over 40,000 lives have been lost in this process. Thousands of soldiers and officers of the Pakistan Army have also been killed by the TTP. Acceding to talks with the TTP while they reject the Constitution and the state’s territorial sovereignty would set a terrible precedent and also lead to legal complications with respect to the clearly stated constitutional provisions.

As the PTI and its allies take charge in K-P, it would be worth remembering the significance attached in the party manifesto to achieving peace within the province. Hopefully, the party realises the mammoth task at hand and manages to turn the tables around in a conflict that is becoming increasingly devastating for the province and its citizens. The elections have been over for a while now and it is time to mould rhetoric into policy and achieve results. Most importantly, it needs to review its proposed strategy to deal with the situation in the wake of the attacks on MPAs in the province.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 21st,  2013.

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COMMENTS (7)

momand | 7 years ago | Reply | Recommend

''Despite the victory of a pro-peace coalition and its overtures to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), militancy and violence continues unabated in the province. The recent suicide bombing in Mardan, which killed dozens, including MPA Imran Khan Mohmand, is a strong statement by the TTP that their goals are not likely to disappear because of a change in the provincial government.'' By applying the term ''pro-peace'' for the current govt. the editorial seems to imply that the previous government was anti-peace which, to be fair, is an injustice to them.what follows then is that it is not the taliban that didn't want peace rather the previous government. thus the label of pro-peace is in contradiction with the central theme of this editorial. in my view, the current government in khyber pakhtoonkhwa (and in the centre, too) should be dubbed as pro-taliban rather than pro-peace.

Mirza | 7 years ago | Reply | Recommend

A fair and pragmatic editorial by ET. Taliban in Afghanistan are fighting for their native country against foreign forces. TTP are global jihadi who have waged a war on native people and Pakistani state to implement their agenda. It is a shame that they endorsed two rightwing parties in the elections and gave them a walkover to victory. Now it is payback time and their prodigies are talking against co-education and releasing extremist killers like Qadri. All the progressive forces should stand up against the foreign jihadists and terrorists who want to impose their version of religion on Islamic Republic.

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