Taliban have reassured won’t allow TTP to use Afghan land against Pakistan: Sheikh Rashid


ISLAMABAD, AUG 23: Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said on Monday the Afghan Taliban had reassured the government that the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) would not be given permission to operate in Afghanistan against Pakistan.

Responding to a question while addressing a press conference in Islamabad, the interior minister said some TTP members such as Maulvi Faqir Mohammad had been released by the Taliban after their takeover of Kabul on August 15, adding that the government was in “full contact” with the Taliban on the issue.

“The related authorities there have been told that those who have done terrorism in Pakistan [are controlled].

“The Afghan Taliban have reassured [us] that Afghanistan’s land will not be allowed to be used in any case by the TTP,” said Rashid.

He said Pakistan desired peace in Afghanistan since peace in one country was related to peace in the other.

The interior minister’s comments come two days after the Foreign Office said Pakistan would ask the incoming government in Afghanistan to act against the TTP.

“Pakistan has been taking up the issue of the use of Afghan soil by the TTP for terrorist activities inside Pakistan with the previous Afghan government and would continue raising the issue with the incoming government in Kabul as well to ensure that the TTP is not provided any space in Afghanistan to operate against Pakistan,” the FO spokesman had said.

The FO was questioned on the release of TTP prisoners and responded that Pakistan would “continue to oppose support for any individual or any proscribed groups that remained involved in terrorist activities inside Pakistan”.

According to a report prepared for the United Nations Security Council in July, the TTP has about 6,000 trained fighters on the Afghan side of the border.

The report had noted that “despite growing distrust, TTP and the Taliban carry on with relations mainly as before”, adding that the former supported the latter in operations against the Afghan government.