ISLAMABAD - Secretary National Security Secretariat and Pakistan’s former ambassador to Afghanistan Ambassador Masood Khan yesterday warned of a bloody civil war in Afghanistan if the ongoing peace and reconciliation process failed.

He made these observations while briefing the National Assembly’s subcommittee on Foreign Affairs which met under the chairmanship of Sardar Awais Ahmad Khan Leghari on Tuesday.

Khan said that Afghanistan has never conducted any major counter-terrorism operation like Pakistan’s ongoing military operation Zarb-e-Azb against terrorist and extremists which proved as backbreaking one for the insurgents.

Masood Khan was of the view that the Afghan government and Afghan media both blame Pakistan for all the failures and weaknesses in Afghanistan. Until and unless Afghan government acknowledges the contribution of Pakistan in counter terrorism and reciprocate with matching response to Pakistan challenges relating to countering terrorism would persist, he added.

He emphasised the need for close cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan on fighting non-state actors playing havoc on both sides of Pak-Afghan border.

Ambassador Masood Khan noted that Afghan government has shown reluctance to recognise its international border with Pakistan and pointed out that was why the insurgents were taking advantage of the situation and operating out and destabilising Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He emphasised the need for effective border management by the two countries to curb the activities of insurgents.

Commenting on the repatriation of Afghan refugees from Pakistan to their homeland, ambassador Khan said he was not sure whether it would be possible by June 2016.

Because of lack of proper infrastructure and allied facilities by the Afghan government for the return of Afghan refugees, all efforts for their repatriation efforts have failed to bear fruits.

Pakistan and Afghanistan have recently enhanced cooperation in intelligence sharing and military to military cooperation to take bilateral steps to broaden bilateral cooperation in counter terrorism and in securing the Pak-Afghan border in order to deny freedom of movement and action to the insurgents.

Some TTP fighters had fled into Afghanistan to avoid military operations in FATA and had established their safe heavens in border regions in Afghanistan. They have been planning and executing terror attacks to destabilise Pakistan. Pakistan has been requesting Afghan authorities to do the needful.