Taliban peace talks Pakistan’s “own decision,” says Nisar

Sep 11, 2013| Courtesy by : dawn.com

APP and DAWN.COM

ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said on Tuesday that the framework for holding dialogue with Taliban is ready and there was no foreign pressure in this regard.

APP Photo

APP Photo

Addressing a press conference, he said it was the unanimous decision of politicians and military leadership to hold talks with the Taliban in the best national interest.

“It is our own decision. The draft for the talks is ready, however, I cannot share its details. We will keep you updating and share information as the talks progress,” he added.

The minister said it was the government’s prime responsibility to pull the country out of the crisis by carefully analyzing the situation and pursuing a pragmatic strategy.

Nisar said preparations for holding the All Parties Conference (APC) were started two months back and the decision was taken in the best national interest. “Nothing will be hidden away from the nation,” he said.

“Security issue is a very sensitive matter as many veiled forces do not want peace in the country.”

Highlighting importance of the media’s role in the present scenario, the interior minister said it should be more responsible while reporting on security issues, especially talks with the Taliban, as an unauthentic news item could sabotage the entire process. The media has an important role in consolidating the dialogue process, he added.

Chaudhry Nisar said it was encouraging that the Taliban had also reciprocated the government’s gesture. He said the draft on internal security was also ready and the federal government was waiting for input from the provinces.

Karachi briefing

Giving details of the ongoing targeted operation in Karachi, he said the Rangers had conducted 74 raids in various areas and rounded up 158 criminals on the basis of intelligence in last four days.

The minister said 111 weapons and 1,862 ammunition were recovered from the arrested extortionists, targets killers and kidnappers. Besides, the Karachi police also arrested 516 criminals, involved in various street and other crimes during this period, he added.

A significant drop in crimes including targeted killings is evident ever since the operation was launched, said Nisar adding that majority of the suspects arrested belonged to political parties.

However, despite the minister’s claim, at least a dozen people including two policemen were killed in different incidents of violence in the port city on Tuesday.

Replying to a question, he said Balochistan Chief Minister Dr Abdul Malik Baloch had been given a mandate to hold talks with the Baloch nationalists and convene a conference in Quetta, which will also be attended by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

The information minister rejected any kind of agreement on US drone attacks saying the army chief had also conveyed the same to PTI chief Imran Khan.