ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan pointed out that all those, who kept harping that the TTP would not agree to talk within the parameters of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, stand totally exposed now.

Imran also reminded that in the nine accords the Pakistan Army earlier signed with the TTP, there has been no conditionality of imposition of Shariah. The issue is moot since the Constitution of Pakistan provides for Shariah and states that no law can be made repugnant to Islam. He stated that his consistent assertion that the TTP terrorism was directly the result of the US war on terror, has once again been validated as the main demands of the TTP are related to Pakistan extricating itself from the US war on terror and the stoppage of drone attacks.

Imran said that in this connection, President Obama's decision to reduce drone usage because of its negative fallout on the population of the target areas is also recognition of the PTI’s position on drones exacerbating terrorism in Pakistan. He stressed that he had always opposed military action including the sending of the military into FATA in 2004. He said, "It has always been evident, and never more starkly than today, that the dollar-dependent lobby has been deliberately maligning me with false labels such as Taliban Khan, simply to draw attention away from the clear link between the US war on terror and terrorism in Pakistan."

In addition, Imran asserted that pro-war political parties, some with leaders self-exiled in the West and others, exposed as having taken huge dollar amounts; and still others part of the US-brokered NRO (Condoleezza Rice has claimed her role in her book) were deliberately opposing peace through dialogue with false narratives. All these parties along with US dictated narratives stand exposed today, he concluded as he expressed the hope that the dialogue process moves forward and peace comes to Pakistan with an end to bloodshed and hatred.

Monitoring adds: Meanwhile, in an interview with the Bloomberg, Imran said that the peace talks with Taliban will probably fail and an ensuing military operation would lead to more terrorism.

“The most likely result is that the negotiations will start, there will be about three or four big explosions and terrorist attacks and the negotiations will be called off,” he said adding, “There will be people baying for blood and the operation will start.” He said “If the US announces stopping the drone attacks during the talks, it would be a big plus point. Then the talks would become really meaningful.”

Imran said the US sabotaged an earlier effort at talks with a November 1 drone attack that killed Hakimullah Mehsud, the TTP’s leader who was due to start talks with the government in the ensuing days. He further said that the US doesn’t want there to be peace talks here or peace in Pakistan while they are leaving Afghanistan. “The thinking is that if they are engaged here, they would not be going across to fight,” he argued.

Imran criticised PM Nawaz Sharif for waiting too long after the May election to start talks with the TTP. Sharif’s negotiation team, which includes two journalists, also reflected his lack of seriousness, the PTI chairman said.

“If I was him, I would lead it myself,” Imran said of Nawaz Sharif. “It’s too important an issue for Pakistan.”

Imran said that the TTP had chosen him as a negotiator because they trust him to withstand the US pressures.

“Clearly, I don’t represent Taliban,” he said, adding that he disagreed with the TTP’s interpretation of Islamic Sharia law. The group will have to accept that the way to bring change in Pakistan is through elections and the nation’s constitutional process, he said, adding: “You can’t impose it through the barrel of a gun.”

Khan said the TTP’s statements revealed that the US presence in the region was fuelling the militants. “We’ll win this war if we disengage from the US war,” he said. “As long as we are thought of fighting the US war, they would declare jihad on us, there would be the deadly suicide bomber. This would be a never-ending war,” he added.

A February 4 blast in Peshawar that killed 8 people was evidence that saboteurs intended to derail dialogue, Khan said. Besides the US, he said, vested interests that are profiting from the instability and want it to continue include mafias controlling the timber and drug trade, and foreign-backed groups receiving money from abroad.