ISLAMABAD - With no let up in the terrorist attacks in the country the meeting between the government and Taliban nominated committees scheduled for Wednesday was deferred for a day and now both sides would be meeting here today.
In a media chat here at a local hotel, member of four-member government committee Rustam Shah Mohmand said that no meeting could be held on Wednesday and now the two committees would meet on Thursday (today). He termed the dialogue process with TTP complex and complicated as both sides are likely to face difficulties while treading the path to peace through dialogue.
Prof Ibrahim, one of the Taliban designated negotiators, said that in the Thursday's meeting with government team they would discuss ways and means to enforce ceasefire in the restive areas. Ibrahim, who is also Amir of Jamaat-I-Islami’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhawa chapter, said the government side was yet to respond to their demand for meeting with prime minister, army chief and ISI DG, and they would take up this issue in the today’s meeting.
Sources informed The Nation that government was perturbed over the surge in the terrorist attacks, particularly in KPK, since the initiation of the negotiation process and some of the people close to PM Nawaz Sharif were of the view that the negotiations could not progress in the given situation where innocent people are being killed by militants.
But TTP nominated team chief Samiul Haq claimed that talks with government were progressing well and insisted that all the groups within TTP conglomeration wanted negotiated settlement of the issue and none of them was behind the recent attacks. TTP leadership had already dissociated themselves from these attacks and they were trying to use their influence on other militant groups to prevent such attacks in future, he added.
Samiul Haq, who also heads his own faction of Jamiat Ulma-i-Islam, has also called the meeting of noted religious scholars in Lahore on Feb 15 to take them on board about the ongoing peace parleys between the government and banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).
Rustam Shah said some groups within TTP were averse to the peace process but he made it clear that the negotiations would only be held with Taliban mainstream and government would not engage other groups separately in peace talks. He further clarified that all peace talks would be held within the ambit of constitution and law of the land. To a question he said the first priority would be enforcing truce, as without ceasefire the talks process could not achieve the desired results.
Sources close to the TTP nominated team informed The Nation that in Thursday's meeting with government team they would discuss the overall peace process and seek explanations of some points as asked by the TTP political Shoora. They would then again go to Waziristan for consultation with TTP leadership for furthering the process.