Printed on Sat Oct 01 2022 9:28:15 AM

Afghan role with Pakistan in coming days

International Desk
World
Afghan role with Pakistan
The Taliban are consolidating themselves as the new rulers of Afghanistan, and at the same time many countries in the rest of the world are busy determining their own roles and strategies in this new reality.

Diplomatic activity in Afghanistan is now in full swing in various capitals of the world - from Moscow to Beijing, from Berlin to Islamabad.

Moreover, the devastating suicide bombing at Kabul airport on August 26 makes it clear that some other armed groups operating in Afghanistan are not happy with the Taliban's victory, and they are expressing that.

But how are all these important countries trying to gain or maintain their influence from the Taliban in the new Afghanistan? How the new Afghan situation could affect these countries:

Pakistan:

The country that will be most affected by the coup in Kabul is Pakistan. Pakistan shares a 2400 km border with Afghanistan.

The number of Afghan refugees registered in Pakistan is 1.4 million. The actual number is much higher. As a result, Pakistan is most affected by any instability in Afghanistan. But Pakistan also has the closest relationship with the Taliban.

The word 'Taliban', which means students in Pashto language, emerged in northern Pakistan in the 1990s. Many of those who first joined the movement were educated in madrassas in Pakistan.

Although Pakistan has always refused to help the Taliban, Pakistan was one of the three countries that recognized them after they seized power in Kabul in 1996. The other two countries were Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Although there have been tensions with the Taliban over the past 20 years, Umer Karim, a researcher at the Royal United Service Institute, a British think tank, said: "There is a general belief among Pakistani policymakers that this time they have achieved something.“

Those in Pakistan who attach great importance to rivalry with India in foreign policy feel that the Taliban's seizure of power will reduce India's influence in Afghanistan.

"Pakistan was very concerned about Indian consulates, especially in border Afghan cities like Jalalabad and Kandahar," Mr. Karim said.

He said Pakistan believed that India was the main instigator of the anti-Pakistan militant group Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in the north and the Baloch separatist group in the south and that the Indian consulates in Afghanistan provided assistance to the rebel groups.

The researcher said Pakistan believes that once the Taliban seize power, they will be able to regain their influence in Afghanistan.

"Afghanistan's main trade is through Pakistan. From rice, flour, vegetables to cement and construction materials also go to Afghanistan through Pakistan.”

Karim thinks the Taliban will be interested in cooperating with Pakistan on various issues, especially security, because of its economic dependence on Pakistan.

At the same time, Pakistan is keen to build a trade corridor with Central Asian countries through Afghanistan.

"The Taliban government is at risk of becoming ostracised in the world. In this situation, they will not be able to go against the will of Pakistan, ”said Mr. Karim.

Voice TV/IA
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