Stop drones to make militants give up their Jihad narrative, Imran tells Kerry

Published: August 1, 2013
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US Secretary of State John Kerry. PHOTO: FILE

US Secretary of State John Kerry. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Thursday that stopping the drone strikes would motivate militants to give up their Jihad narrative.

In a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry, PTI Chairman said that bringing an end to the drone strikes would allow the militants to own their land and stop them from carrying out attacks.

He explained that the continued US drone strikes were counterproductive as they not only cost civilian lives but also fuel terrorism.

Remarking on the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, Imran asserted that it needed to be carried out in an orderly fashion or else Pakistan will have to face the brunt of the situation left behind, like in the case of Soviet withdrawal.

Upon Kerry inquiring about Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Imran said that it was undergoing a challenging time as it was surrounded by the volatile tribal areas.

The PTI Chairman admitted that the provincial police were ill-equipped to fight the militants, particularly in the absence of an holistic counter terrorism policy.

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Reader Comments (67)

  • Adnan
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:28PM

    An improvement on Hilary but still the same boss (Obama-Bin-Laden).

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  • Mohammad
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:31PM

    Allahu Akbar

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  • Dr. Khalid
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:35PM

    I’m sure Kerry liked the man to man talk!

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  • Mudassar
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:36PM

    KHAN…..you are the ONE who always stands with your words like iron man and never ever compromise of your commitments doesn’t matter what ever results will be, we love you very much and thanks for your teachings to the nation of dignity and self respect…..GOD bless you SIR.

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  • Shahzad
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:39PM

    Dont’ know whether drones are counter productive or not but they surely represent us as a spineless nation in the world. Just tell me how you feel about Yemen when you hear about American drone killing somebody there?

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  • Nadir
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:40PM

    So police in KP is illequipped because of a lack of counter terrorism policy? Right. Tomorrow schools will be underfunded because the federal government doesnt have an education policy.

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  • Dr Dang
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:41PM

    Motivate militants to give up terrorism ?
    Kerry should ask Imran about the source of weapons for these terrorist.

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  • Deepwater
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:46PM

    Imran Khan is utterly naive.

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  • gp65
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:48PM

    If TTP’s narrative was that they were doing jihad – as indicated by Imran, would they be blowing up girls schools, killing women in marketplace, children on playground, people in mosques?

    Also if drones stop, then what? If the Pakistani army takes these militants on, will the jihad narrative stop? Will more civilians rather than less not die and more civilian properties be destroyed by the aerial bombing which is blind as distinct from the drones which are well targeted?

    The sovereignty argument which Nawaz spoke of is the ONLY argument that has any merit and even then it is Pakistan’s responsibility to ensure that its sovereign territory is not used to attack other countries. The narrative of uncontrollable and ungovernable ‘non-state-actors’ does not sit well with a sovereign country.Recommend

  • NR
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:49PM

    Bravo..IK does not mince words and tells the truth….

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  • ;-)chief
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:52PM

    and will he listen…….????

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  • Aug 1, 2013 - 6:57PM

    Taliban’s principle is of ‘NO MERCY’ . They have even attacked their apologists like Maulana Fazulr Rehman and Qazi Hussain Ahmad. Khan also proclaimed that if i hadnt fell that day , I would have been killed by Taliban’s next day

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  • PakPower
    Aug 1, 2013 - 6:57PM

    Spot on! Now let’s see what the Americans do about it.

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  • unbelievable
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:00PM

    IK still promoting the mantra that if drones and the USA go away that the Taliban are going to lay down their arms and embrace rule by Islamabad – naive and disingenuous.

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  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:01PM

    It is not only Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Shariff and PTI Chief Imran Khan on the same page to stop the US drone strikes in Pakistan, but all the political, religious leaders and the entire nation is on the same page that US should stop drone attacks on Pakistan forthwith.

    Until and unless the drone strikes will not be stopped, the relations between Pakistan and US will not become normal.

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  • TightPatloon
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:03PM

    I can only feel amazed at IK statement. We were thinking that after gaining some more seats he will make some more sensible comments but naiveity is increasing day by day. The narrative of Jihadis is not drones. There narrative is killing all those who do not conform to their warped via of Islam and this includes 90% of sensible muslims in the world. What has wahabism got to do with drones. The only answer to this is more drones

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  • startrek
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:04PM

    This man wants to be amirulmomin of Pakistan and fears continuous drone attack will put his ambitions in dust.His lips or silent on hundred of thousands of casualties of innocent Pakistanis at the hand of his beloved.What kind of human is he.

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  • Ali Raja
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:04PM

    Like they started Jihad because of Drone strikes.

    Mr Khan better crack down on Madrisaas and their training centres

    Stop facilitating TTP by stop drones and all operations.

    How many more D.I. incidents you want to witness before you’ll realize you cant hold talks with these barbarians

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  • 3rdRockFromTheSun
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:13PM

    The US policy is very clear – either you (Pak) deal with the terrorists or we will. For Pak to deal with it, they would need boots on the ground and more importantly the political will – both of which Pak doesn’t have /want to. So the only answer is drones.

    And it is so naive of IK and other Pakistanis to think that if the drones and Americans are gone, the Taliban will give up their arms and go back to their ‘civilian’ life – in fact it would be just the opposite. With the Americans gone, the Taliban (Afg and Pak, there is no real difference) will be able to devote their full time and energy to demolishing the Pak govt and its institutions, and turn Pakistan into a clone of Afghanistan.

    The whole world sees this, but most Pakistanis have their heads buried so deep in the sand that only their toes are sticking out now.

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  • Syed Ali Raza
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:16PM

    @unbelievable:
    and what’s the mantra of other political parties including PMLN? They also say (atleast before elections) that drones strikes must be stopped. Imran Khan is saying the same. What’s tje problem in it?

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  • Ali
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:19PM

    we wants drone US please keep it up.

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  • @ishiPTI
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:22PM

    so here is only man who can look into the eyes of Americans & speak the truth.

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  • Aug 1, 2013 - 7:23PM

    It is laughable when Imran says “stopping the drone strikes would motivate militants to give up their Jihad narrative.’ As if there was no jihad and Al Quida was a peace loving movement before drone attacks began. Is Imran making fool of others or living in a fool’s paradise.

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  • Aug 1, 2013 - 7:25PM

    It’s sad to see Khan sb. turning into a paragon of naivety and self-deception. Are these ruthless terrorist criminals who mercilessly kill hundreds of innocent people really doing all this because of a few drone attacks? Yeah, right. Why not award the Taliban, the Nishan-e-Pakistan too, while we’re at it. That might make them more patriotic so they stop killing Pakistanis and blasting buildings.

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  • A Abid S
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:36PM

    Counter productive…??? US and their drones have killed more al.queda and ttp top head than our entire military ops for a decade….if it was not for the US and drones we would still have baitullah…obl…ilyas kashmiri and many more…and mr khan ttp will always be there as they have always been there even before 911…remember sipah i sahaba…lashkar jhanvi….Kery is not stupid he knows more than IK…and kery is not a high school kid or a hobo who will get impressed by the openness of IK ..he is a states man and meet with people like IK every day..his only surprise may be about how misguided IK is…m

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  • Zulqarnain
    Aug 1, 2013 - 7:47PM

    Yes, and until drones stop, me, Imran Khan will continue to watch and stay criminally silent while TTP brethren murder civilians, kill girls, blow up schools, attack my army, and do big jail breaks. PTI fans: please, the militants hardly even mention drones – they are very clear about their aims, which is to fight Pakistan until they see their ideology implemented. So, please wake up and stop supporting this clean-shaven Taliban.

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  • Nizam
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:03PM

    Upon Kerry inquiring about Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Imran said that it was undergoing a challenging time as it was surrounded by the volatile tribal areas.

    Mr. Khan should know that we in FATA are undergoing a worse time than KPK. You talk about the drones (a FATA based issue) yet you so cleverly hoodwink terrorism (an even bigger FATA based issue). About time PTI sets their priorities. Either stop talking about FATA based issues or start with the bigger ones.

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  • Adnan Siddiqi
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:07PM

    And we all thought that IK would look into the eye of Kerry and tell straight up that the drones are a violation of Pakistan’s territorial integrity and sanctity, period! This is the same kind of reasoning that the Federal Government is advocating with the yanks. What exactly earth shattering has IK inferred here?

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  • Bilal
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:18PM

    Kerry should have said “Ask the terrorists to give up terrorism and we will stop the drones”.

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  • Midhat
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:21PM

    @Ali: we wants drone US please keep it up.

    So if there is a terrorist in your neighbourhood would you would still like it if a drone landed in your town’s school or your backyard?

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  • rp
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:28PM

    no no…… drones to continue…let every Jihadi killed

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  • noman1234
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:46PM

    @Nadir:
    terrorism is a national issue, education is provincial issue. no relation/comparison what so ever. try to compare the situation by giving a similar example. do not compare apple and oranges.

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  • Saleem
    Aug 1, 2013 - 8:55PM

    So this is IK’s twisted logic. The taliban are carrying out jihadi activity against US drone attacks by murdering muslim Pakistani civilian and security personnel! Not only is he bonkers but outright dangerous.Recommend

  • noman1234
    Aug 1, 2013 - 9:02PM

    @unbelievable:
    Man your knowledge on this matter is so superficial its pathetic. There are 2 types of Taliban groups. One who are pro-talk and are willing to cooperate with Govt, other Taliban groups are the ones you cannot talk to no matter how much you try, and force is the only option. Once drone attacks stop you will be able to have talks with Pro-talk Taliban because previously whenever they wanted to talk they were hit by drone attacks. This will also give the provincial Govt and National Govt clear idea which Taliban to target and with whom you can talk. So it is very important that US intervention is jointly pushed out so that Govt has clear idea who is their enemy and who is their friend. Imran Khan never said to Talk to all types of Taliban on expense of country security. He just does not want to paint everyone with same brush because that will lead to Injustice and more violence

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  • Babar
    Aug 1, 2013 - 9:07PM

    Cessation of drone thingies is crucial to finally bring Pakistan into the 11th century.

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  • Raj - USA
    Aug 1, 2013 - 9:30PM

    In the recent attack on DI Khan prison, the talibans called on loud speakers, the names of the four Shia prisoners. They then cut off the heads of the Shia prisoners and took away with them heads of two shia prisoners. Though they had guns and shot others they took care not to shoot the shia prisoners but cut off their heads. When the hatred and barbarity has reached this level, can anyone bring any sense to the talibans by talking to them. Does the drone attacks have anything to do with shias? Are the shias responsible for drone strikes? Has Imran Khan condemned or even mentioned even a word about this heinous act by the talibans? Why is Imran Khan continuing to speak for the talibans and supporting them so enthusiastically?

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  • Raj - USA
    Aug 1, 2013 - 9:33PM

    @noman1234:
    And this group of talibans willing to talk peace with the government are the “SILENT MAJORITY” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • KK
    Aug 1, 2013 - 9:55PM

    Full marks to Imran Khan……and I bet now Kerry goes back to US as confused as ever, because there is no doubt Nawaz had told him to continue the drones!

    Also, everyone who thinks taliban will not stop terrorism after stopping the drones need to understand that killing the motive in this case disassociating our selves from the US is the only way out.

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  • Iftikhar Khan
    Aug 1, 2013 - 10:21PM

    Taliban and their like minded groups are doing barbaric terrorism on innocent pakistanis long before US started drone strikes. It is very naive to say that they are doing becuase of drones.

    Why are taliban talking to US then? and still continuing to kill innocent pakistanis?

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  • Butt
    Aug 1, 2013 - 10:36PM

    @Midhat:
    “So if there is a terrorist in your neighbourhood”

    Yes one should be bombed as he fails to inform the police of terrorists there.

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  • Hasan Mehmood
    Aug 1, 2013 - 10:46PM

    Get a categorical statement from TTP and their allies that they would lay down arms once drones stop and Americans leave. Believe me the whole nation will march on to the American Embassy to force them out.
    Pending that assurance, IK should keep his mouth shut.

    Regards,
    PTI Voter

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  • sajid
    Aug 1, 2013 - 11:38PM

    i hope wid this demand federal govt will also speak to stop drones

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  • Sexton Blake
    Aug 2, 2013 - 3:49AM

    The Americans are slow learners. They have had the same policy of attacking so called militants for 13 years and it is obvious to even a first year high school student that the policy is not working. Imran Khan is right on the ball

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  • Aug 2, 2013 - 5:06AM

    @Raj – USA:

    Where did you read or hear about this atrocity from?

    It always has been a shameful issue of IK, and other leaders, and many in the ideological brainwashed majority who clearly sympathize with, condone, or outright support, such a despicable lot and their long acts of terrorism, against the minority and any other citizen whose opposed them way before even drones or the like.

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  • csmann
    Aug 2, 2013 - 7:49AM

    The argument works in the reverse also;if Taliban lay down their arms and stop killing Pakistanis and others(though number of Pakistanis killed is hundreds of times number of Americans and others), there won’t be a need for drones. So far as the drones attacks are becoming less frequent, the Taliban have become bolder and more vicious.

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  • Raj - USA
    Aug 2, 2013 - 8:29AM

    @bigsaf:
    I heard it on “Bolta Pakistan” July 30, 2013
    Link:
    http://www.awaztoday.co/News-Talk-Shows/41724/Bolta-Pakistan-30th-July-2013.aspx

    I heard it also on “News night with Neelum” July 31, 2013
    Link:
    http://www.awaztoday.co/News-Talk-Shows/41784/News-Night-with-Neelum-31st-July-2013.aspx

    I heard it on another Pakistan TV channel also but forgot it.

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  • Aug 2, 2013 - 8:51AM

    @Raj – USA:
    I’ve found the relevant info on the incident. Unfortunate I didn’t learn it here on Pakistan’s ET or Dawn. After all the news of sectarian atrocities, I don’t understand why this detail was whitewashed and censored on these respected local newspapers of all places about one of the most dangerous incidents about militants who have the potential to inflict serious harm to the public, particularly the minorities. So much for informing.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jul/30/taliban-attack-pakistan-prison

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  • Najeebullah
    Aug 2, 2013 - 9:57AM

    Halting the drone strikes is the biggest demand of terrorists because its the only obstacle in their way to kill every non beard person in Pakistan and Afghanistan..

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  • Aug 2, 2013 - 7:22PM

    @Raj – USA:

    Thanks for replying and sharing the links. Regards

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  • Midhat
    Aug 2, 2013 - 10:27PM

    @Butt:
    So there are terrorists who roaming around even in Karachi, Lahore Peshwar and other major cities and you are suggesting all these cities should be droned?
    And you do know that these drones have killed children right? your logic is that these children deserved to be bombed since someone failed to report suspicious people in thier locality.?
    I wonder how all these people supporting drone program would feel if their neighbourhoods and homes get droned!

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  • Ali S
    Aug 3, 2013 - 12:21AM

    I voted for PTI but I’m regretting that decision with every passing day. IK is naive and completely clueless about what kind of monsters he’s dealing with. The most realistic scenario is that if the drones are stopped, Pak Army will have to deal with the mess – I’d rather have these extremist scum killed by drones than waste the life of a Pakistani soldier on them.

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  • Tamur
    Aug 3, 2013 - 12:24AM

    @Midhat: further to my last comment, if there is a terrorist in my backyard, I would either be killed by a terrorists bomb or a drone. In the end of the day I would not like to live in fear that terrorist is roaming around with a gun or a bomb in my street. I would rather shoot him myself or have a drone hit his hideout.

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  • csmann
    Aug 3, 2013 - 1:08AM

    @Midhat:
    How would you feel if a dehshatgard blows himself in your neighborhood. At least drones have a target in mind,but the Taliban target innocents indiscriminately.

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  • Sexton Blake
    Aug 3, 2013 - 2:52AM

    @Raj – USA:
    Dear Raj,
    Dreadful though it was to read that 4 people had their heads cut off, the whole incident pales into insignificance when compared with what the US military has been up to over the last 12 years. I will not list all their brutal acts, but about 2,000,000 people are dead as a result of their actions, and many of the deceased were blown up in little pieces. Imran Khan wishes to stop this US mayhem in Pakistan. To me, Imran Khan is the lone voice of sanity in this crazy world.

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  • Tamur
    Aug 3, 2013 - 6:52AM

    Who cares what Imran Khan says to Kerry! IK is only an MNA, he is not a Minister or PM, so his words mean nothing to Kerry as he does not represent the majority members of the Parliament or the country. So he should stop pretending like he is a PM!

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  • Aug 3, 2013 - 10:22AM

    @Sexton Blake:

    No it does not pale in comparison, considering there’s been a brutal sectarian cleansing going on for decades in Pakistan, way before any drones or US involvement in the last 12 years, and IK and other shameful extremist terrorist apologists who are pigeon holed in their anti-US imperialist delusion are not addressing this ideological insanity properly or sincerely with the Pakistani minority.

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  • Jat
    Aug 3, 2013 - 6:14PM

    @Raj – USA: Thanks for the links. Strange not a peep out of any Pakistani newspaper, neither from PTI chairman, nor from the KPK CM.

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  • Jat
    Aug 3, 2013 - 6:17PM

    So educate us Imran Khan, will the terrorists stop beheading minorities and Shia once the drones are stopped ? Will the mass murder of Hazara community stop once the drones are stopped ?

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  • Raj - USA
    Aug 3, 2013 - 7:07PM

    @Jat:
    @bigsaf:
    @Sexton Blake:

    Talibans did not just cut off the heads of 4 or 5 shia prisoners. They also took away with them two severed heads as trophy. This is what I heard probably in one of the links I had provided or in another Pakistan TV channel. The talibans knew exactly how many shia prisoners are in the prison and were asking them by their names to come out over megaphones. The Sunni prisoner who shot Malala was also in the same prison and also wanted to escape. For some reasons the talibans told him that they shall not take him as his name is not on their list.

    Why I am so bitter about Imran Khan? Anyone who had read my comments 2 years ago would have noticed that I was an enthusiastic supported of IK. As soon as he started to rub shoulders with terrorists and stand up in the podium with other DPC leaders, I realized that he is more of a danger to Pakistan than anyone else. Everyone knows about other leaders who had been supporting terrorists. IK was a refreshing face, Oxford educated and outwardly moderate and progressive. He had the charisma and charm but he used it for wrong purposes to side with the terrorists and promote hatred and violence. No one will listen if Sheikh Rasheed speaks. But, people will listen and follow if IK speaks now. Important to recognize here that IK gained his political following only after he stood on the same podium with other DPC leaders. He did not have any following till then. He has caused the maximum damage to Pakistan.

    Should sunnis not stop the atrocities on shias and come out openly and sincerely (not just a customary speech), Pakistan will see the worst conflict that shall pale before Iraq conflict. Till today, no leader from any political party, be it PPP or PML-N or PTI has shown any sincerity. So, is the Army and the Courts. Media is silent out of fear.

    Finally, Saxton Blake. If a mass murderer kills 10 innocents, it would still be not that much horrifying as one person killing only one other person, by slowly cutting off his body into small parts. The extent to which the mind of the culprit has been poisoned should be realized.

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  • Hasan Mehmood
    Aug 3, 2013 - 8:42PM

    @Sexton Blake:
    Oh my GOD, I am utterly shocked that you can stoop so low in your pitiable attempt to defend the in defendable. How can you compare the brutal killing of someone solely on the basis of surname / sect and not even remotely connected with war on terror with general atrocities in a theater of war which are separately condemnable. For all the cruel killings of American forces (not to be condoned) they have never slaughtered Taliban prisoners unlike TTP who have repeatedly done so with Pak Army soldiers. As RAJ – USA pointed out above, its not only the brutality but the mindset behind it which needs to be condemned without in anyway diluting it. Please have mercy on us if indeed you are a Pakistani.

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  • Sexton Blake
    Aug 4, 2013 - 4:14AM

    For all the American apologists who criticize Imran Khan I can only say that you are not looking at the big picture. Ineffectual drone and aircraft strikes against the Taliban, by US forces, have not and will not solve the problem. The Americans, who have more weapons of war than any other country have been fighting the Taliban for nearly 13 years to no avail, and are going home next year with their tale between their legs. Although given different names over the centuries the Taliban have routed Britain, Russia, and more lately the Americans. The Americans are spending one billion dollars a week to keep the war going, and although it may not bother them that their soldiers are getting killed the bottom line is that the war is sending them broke, and they have to get out. In regard to the Taliban I do not think Imran Khan has said that they are good guys. He wants negotiation with them without the Americans constantly acting as provocateurs. Pakistan has a problem and nobody other than themselves is going to solve it for them. Lets face it, the Taliban is a big problem, which is not going away. For all those critics of Imran Khan please write in and give your solution to the problem. Obviously, the present planningy, whether you like it or not, is failing miserably. Something different has to be done, instead of the current, same old policy, which is having disastrous results. Thus, I am afraid we have to face reality. Of course, another alternative could be for the Americans to do what they are best at. Bomb Pakistan into the stone-age, which they have done to several other countries in recent times. Unfortunately, I think the Taliban would still be around to pick up the pieces.

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  • Sexton Blake
    Aug 4, 2013 - 4:28AM

    @Hasan Mehmood:
    Dear Hasan,
    You should read up on recent history. The US has killed thousands of Afghan innocents and in particular an untold number of Taliban prisoners, but of course they do not admit to it, and mainstream media do not normally release US atrocities.

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  • Hasan Mehmood
    Aug 5, 2013 - 1:10PM

    @Sexton Blake:
    {For all the American apologists who criticize Imran Khan I can only say that you are not looking at the big picture}

    Big Picture> If you do not consider the death of 40,000 innocent civilians and death of more soldiers than all Indo Pak wars combined as a big picture, then it is futile to argue with you.

    {Although given different names over the centuries the Taliban have routed Britain, Russia, and more lately the Americans}

    Only two points in brief:
    1. Pak Army is not an occupying force.
    2. TTP is not a freedom fighting movement.

    Moderator ET: Please do not deny my right of reply

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  • Sexton Blake
    Aug 5, 2013 - 7:33PM

    @Hasan Mehmood:
    Dear Hasan,
    You completely ignored or disagreed with everything I wrote and came up with an emotive and apposing point-of-view, which lacked logic, and will solve nothing.. You made my point exactly. Obviously, you are an American apologist, but unfortunately more of the same that Pakistan/Afghanistan have endured over the last 13 years is not the answer. With people like you Imran Khan, who is attempting to introduce change has a tough job ahead of him. Nobody has said it will be easy, but a change in thinking, which is is not clouded with emotion, is required. .

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  • Hasan Mehmood
    Aug 6, 2013 - 4:57AM

    @Sexton Blake:
    Dear ??
    You are free to express your opinions, theories, conjectures and ideas as you deem fit.
    However if you are replying to someone, you are expected to remain focused and to the point. Your previous post comprised two main strands i.e a Big Picture and successful Afghan resistance to foreign occupiers in past and present. While quoting your exact words, I presented what I perceived to be the Big Picture. The famed Afghan resistance was also put in historical perspective. The wording used by me was bland and as non-emotive as possible without using a single cliché or graphic imagery concerning 40,000 deaths. If you find it illogical, please free to repudiate and educate me. Simply branding me as American apologist isn’t good enough. By the way I am willing to join any procession you wish to lead against American Imperialism.

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  • Abid P. Khan
    Aug 18, 2013 - 11:46PM

    @gp65:
    “If TTP’s narrative was that they were doing jihad – as indicated by Imran, would they be blowing up girls schools, killing women in marketplace, children on playground, people in mosques? “

    .
    There must be some common ground, why would they otherwise be such good chums.

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  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Aug 28, 2013 - 11:33AM

    Means US should give up arms first then Taliban will think to srrender their arms .

    What a joke …….
    I K shut uo your mouth …

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