PESHAWAR: Al Qaeda and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) are devising a strategy to exert influence in Afghanistan once the US-Nato troops completely withdraw from the region, said security expert and author Aqeel Yousafzai.
He was speaking at a seminar held on Sunday at Research Library Peshawar. The session focused on Afghanistan’s future after 2014 and its implications on Pakistan.
Yousafzai said Saudi Arabia, Iran, China and the US are engaged in proxy wars in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata), K-P and Balochistan.
“They have waged proxy wars wherever they find fodder for war and insurgencies”, he added.
In light of this development, Yousafzai pressed Pashto scholars to directly consult major stakeholders and find a solution to the surge of militancy in the province.
According to the security expert, the political leadership has failed to address problems faced by Pukhtuns.
“Over 2,000 tribal elders in Fata have succumbed to militant attacks which affected the socio-political life in the tribal belt adversely,” he said.
Speaking at the seminar, Afghan affairs expert, Juma Khan Sufi said the time has come for Pukhtuns to take responsibility for their plight rather than devise a series of conspiracy theories.
“We don’t take responsibility for our own actions,” he said. “We brought the Soviets to Afghanistan and provided an opportunity to al Qaeda and Daish to gain control in the region.”
According to Sufi, Pukhtuns need to come out of tunnel vision and start thinking outside the box.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 24th, 2014.