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Pakistan undertaking dangerous gamble in Afghanistan


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As the US military is continuing with its drawdown from Afghanistan, Pakistan is undertaking a dangerous gamble in the war-torn country and has sought to cultivate radical jihadi groups in the region. In an opinion piece, The Jerusalem Post (JP) said that Pakistan has been providing training, weapons, funding, and intelligence to terrorists to make up for their inability to compete in a conventional war.

“Pakistan’s ISI has been providing training, weapons, funding, and intelligence for the past decades to a number of terrorist organizations including the Taliban, the Haqqani Network, Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT),” the report read.

Despite ample evidence on the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks and the 2019 Pulwama attack, Pakistan refuses to prosecute terror groups for orchestrating the attacks and continues to be a safe haven for terrorists such as JeM founder Masood Azhar.

According to the JP, Pakistan has wrongly been viewed as an ally in resolving the conflict in Afghanistan and fighting the war on terror.

“Despite repeatedly undermining US strategy – out of fear of antagonizing a country with nuclear weapons, coupled with the hope that Islamabad’s ties to Islamist groups could be instrumental in negotiating a peace process in Afghanistan – the West has been reluctant to adopt a harsher stance against Pakistan’s double game.” The opinion piece further argues that Pakistan’s support of jihadi groups stems partly from cynical realism to expand its sphere of influence in Afghanistan and support the insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir.

Although ISI the support Taliban in Afghanistan but it operates as an independent terrorist organisation.

“Without US troops or a reliable peace deal, the continued violence will spill over into Pakistan and result in a mass influx of refugees. A Taliban victory would also embolden other Islamist groups present in Pakistan that wish to see an Islamic revolution take place,” the JP report added.

Amid the recent surge in violence in Afghanistan, Pakistan Foreign Office (FO) last month had said that some 5,000 TTP terrorists were posing a threat to its security from their “sanctuaries” in the neighbouring country.

“The assertions of the Afghan side are contrary to facts on the ground and various reports of the UN, which also corroborate the presence and activities of over 5000- strong TTP in Afghanistan,” the Pakistan FO was quoted by Dawn.

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