Afghans have ‘broken the shackles of slavery, says Pak PM Imran Khan

Afghans have “broken the shackles of slavery,” Imran Khan, Pakistan’s prime minister, said on Monday, in what seems veiled praise to the Taliban’s victory in Afghanistan

Aug 16, 2021
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Pak PM Imran Khan

Afghans have “broken the shackles of slavery,” Imran Khan, Pakistan’s prime minister, said on Monday, in what seems veiled praise to the Taliban’s victory in Afghanistan. His remark came a day after the Taliban overthrew the US-backed Afghan government on Sunday. 

Addressing a program to launch a Single National Curriculum at a ceremony in Islamabad, he equated the cultural imposition with “mental slavery”. Referring to English medium schools in Pakistan, he said they led to the adoption of “someone else’s culture.”

Meanwhile, several prominent non-Taliban Afghan leaders like Younish Qanooni, Ahamd Zia Masooud, Mohaqiq Mohammad along are camping in Islamabad, holding meetings with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. 

“It is necessary that we work together to devise a plan of action for the betterment of Afghanistan and the region," Qureshi said, as per Dawn news.

"Our aim is (to work for a peaceful), united, democratic, stable and prosperous Afghanistan," he said, expressing hope that both the parties would work together to take the process of peace and rapprochement forward in the war-torn country,” he said. 

Pakistan has had uneasy and turbulent relations with the US-backed Afghan government. For the twenty years, Islamabad backed the Taliban covertly--by providing them safe bases-- to undermine the Kabul government. 

However, experts believe its leverage over the Taliban has now significantly reduced as the insurgent group made a decisive come back to power. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s National Security Council is holding a meeting to discuss the situation in Afghanistan. Qureshi said the future course of direction would be decided in the meeting. 

In a veiled reference to India, he said all eyes would be on “the elements” that were trying to distort Pakistan’s image. The international community, he said, has recognized Pakistan’s contribution to Afghanistan Peace Process. 

Experts suggested Pakistan will try to accommodate some of the leaders--mostly from ethnic minority communities--of the previous Afghan government in the future Afghan political dispensation. Whether the Taliban, which has just achieved a decisive victory, will accommodate these figures or not is remain to be seen.  

(SAM) 

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