Post-Taliban takeover, Afghanistan-Pakistan border again emerging as world’s no 1 terrorist hub

Post Taliban takeover, the vast and rugged terrain on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border is again emerging as the world’s number one terror hub.

Iraklis Voridis writing in Greek City Times said that the problem has worsened manifolds by a recalcitrant Pakistan that is vigorously supporting the Taliban, by pressuring the world community to accept it, as it is, citing a humanitarian crisis and misery of the Afghan people.

Violence is already on the upswing targeting ethnic and religious minorities and could reach nightmarish proportions, without the domineering, yet ineffective, presence of American and the NATO forces.

Western efforts are being made to bypass the Taliban who have formed an interim government that is far from inclusive and totally excludes women’s role.
Moreover, the problem is complicated by the hands-off attitude of China and Russia, ostensibly to score diplomatic points with the US/NATO, reported Greek City Times.
They have extended tacit support to the Kabul regime, hoping they can work out their own security arrangements with Kabul, said Voridis.

Last week suicide attack at a Shia mosque in Kunduz in Afghanistan that claimed over a hundred people lives and injured many is a grim reminder of escalating violence in the region.

Credit for it was taken by the ISIS-Khorasan that has a record of being violently anti-Shia. Also, the presence of Al Qaeda and ISIS, with their factions and affiliates is being increasingly felt, security experts say.

Further, the news about violence along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, especially in and around Spin Boldak and Kandahar is being suppressed, as desperate Afghans trying to escape the country, said Voridis.

Pakistan’s own record of dealing with the terrorists at home is becoming alarming and also, bizarre. Instead of fighting them and even seeking to curb them, Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government is seeking to appease them.

Of the domestic groups, it has proscribed the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), and also reached a formal agreement with it. It is struggling to hold in captivity, the TLP’s young chief Hafeez Saad Rizvi after the court released him. The detention and release are both worked out in such a way as to leave loopholes in investigations and prosecution, reported Greek City Times.

The most alarming case is of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Among the worst actions by the TTP was the attack on the Army Public School, Peshawar in December 2014 in which 140, mainly school students, were slaughtered.

The Army’s campaign to catch them led to their crossing over to the no-man’s tribal land from where it launched attacks in Pakistan, said Voridis.

According to Voridis, both the Taliban groups – Afghans and the TTP – are ideologically close and are allies. Unable to get the TTP, the Khan Government is seriously contemplating peace with them.

This has sent alarm signals from the security committee that it is perplexed at the appeasing approach of the government when the situation in neighbouring Afghanistan is also worrying and Kabul is not cooperative on TTP.