Some US sources have revealed that Latif Masood, the deputy commander leader of Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan is arrested in north eastern Afghanistan, in a US Army raid when he was returning back after having conducive talks with Afghan government officials. Latif Masood is considered to be the closest hatchet man of Hakeemullah Masood who is heading Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan and has been responsible for hundreds of killings in Pakistan and dozens in Afghanistan.

Reports also state that Afghan president Hamid Karazai is not happy with this act by US forces as the talks with TTP and Afghan officials were being held on his personal wish and were very close to becoming fruitful. However, this scene will now create a negative image of Mr Karazai in TTP, who (Karzaai) actually wanted to win their confidence after supporting international fight with them for more than a decade.

The TTP, initially, did not declare his (Latif Masood) arrest but later on they accepted the reports. Latif Masood’ capture is being considered as another milestone after Osama bin Laden’s killing. But no one could sense the negative prospect of this action. Latif Masood was not arrested in any planned operation, but was arrested in a very normal position without clashes and firings at the scene. It’s just because Latif was confident enough about the talks and he didn’t think anyone would want to arrest him.

TTP positioned Latif to work between the Afghan government and TTP; this action may have some effect on Pakistan’s side as the country is trying to get the organization on table talk in order to promote peace in region. Pakistan is fully committed to eliminating terrorism from this region, and for that, the country has suffered a lot. Therefore the leadership of Pakistan has now decided to have peace talks with Taliban in Pakistan.

Next year, around 40,000 of NATO troops will be leaving Afghanistan and the security assignments will be transferred to the Afghan forces. Pakistan will have to continue its support for the peace and prosperity in Afghanistan which ultimately benefits Pakistan.

JAVED ALI KALHORO,

Islamabad, October 18.