An important national security meeting chaired by Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif was informed that talks with the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) were being held under the ambit of the Constitution of Pakistan and facilitated by the Afghan government. The meeting was attended by the national political leadership, members of the parliament, military top brass and higher echelons of the Security Establishment. According to details, a committee composed of civil and military representatives, was holding talks with the TTP, but any final decision in that regard would be taken with the approval of the parliament under the Constitution of Pakistan with complete national consensus and unity. According to reports, the participants of the meeting were briefed in detail about the ongoing talks with the TTP, different phases and the whole background under which these talks were initiated. The relevant authorities also briefed the session about the prevailing security situation at the internal and external levels and measures being taken to protect the core interests of the country.
The decades long war in Afghanistan has badly affected Pakistan and besides unprecedented social, economic, financial and cultural issues the country had been hit by the extremism, radicalization which further promoted militancy and terrorism in some factions of the society. The post 9/11 situation and Pakistan’ policy on War on Terror (WoT) and cooperation with global community regarding war in Afghanistan led to a division among the masses, whereas radicalized segment of the society parted its way from the state and took up arms against the nation. The home-grown terrorism hit all parts of the country however Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and tribal areas suffered a lot because of their geographical location, social environment and unhindered movement across Pak-Afghan borders in the past. The wave of terrorism spiraled across the country for over two decades and caused significant economic and human losses. undermined foreign investment, trade and economic activities, and created law and order problems in the country. India tactfully manipulated the situation in its benefit and used these militant organizations to spread terrorism and chaos in the country.
The geostrategic dimensions of the region have changed after the Taliban took over in Afghanistan while the latest situation has brought new opportunities for Pakistan and Afghanistan. The militant organizations had lost their ideological dogma in the present-day scenario and their anti-Pakistan activities have no justification other than playing on behalf of India for monetary gains. According to experts, engagement and talks are the best option to deal a low-level insurgence and terrorism which surely lead the process toward peace otherwise this strategy divides and isolates the terror outfits and increased the legitimacy of the host government, otherwise militant groups mourned the government for losing peace opportunity, gather public sympathizes and play in the hands of the foreign nations for their survival.
Historically, the UK has dealt the threat of IRA through negotiations, Sudan restored peace through an accord with Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), India concluded agreement with Kabri insurgent groups, similarly France and Spain dealt terrorism through peace accords. Therefore, the government should use all available options to maintain peace and restore writ of the law, however the whole process should be transparent and under national consensus, so such endeavors strengthen the government institutions and boost national unity.