Nobody is probably privy to what went on during the extended stay of Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Islamabad, but what came out later was the decision to release Mullah Baradar, an important Afghan Taliban figure earlier known as the head of Quetta Shoora. Although he has not yet been handed over to the Afghan authorities but frequent reports appearing in the media say that he is going to be given to Turkey. What for?

The assertion of Pakistan authorities may understandably be true that Mullah Baradar is no more relevant as there is no Quetta Shoora, but this remains questionable, as to why then Kabul has been insisting on his release? What is the quid pro quo? What is Pakistan getting in return? Is the martyrdom of Major General Sanaullah Niazi the answer? Does the answer lie in the Afghan security forces’ cross border attack that killed five Pakistani citizens?

While many believe, that despite the engineered incidental hurdles; presumably created through a third hand involved must not deter the government from its resolve to holding dialogue with the Taliban, at the same time the desire of talks must not show the government’s position as a weakness.

Pakistan has long been urging the government in Kabul for handing over of Mullah Fazlullah, who is a leading terrorist activity from Kunar and Nurustan areas of Afghanistan where he is reportedly enjoying the hospitality of the Governor of Kunar province; along with his 1,000 to 1,500 diehard terrorists related to mostly the Swat chapter of TTP. Pakistan it seems has failed on diplomatic front too, as Fazlullah is fearlessly conducting attacks inside Pakistan. Attack on Malala was the other big activity. While handing over Mullah Baradar, Pakistan must get Mullah Fazlullah and other top terrorists in return – not to keep in jails for sometime but to send them to gallows as soon as possible.


Peshawar, September 19.