After two days of consultations, diplomats from both sides decided they would adopt a wait and watch posture in the light of Taliban’s assurance that the country would not become a terrorist haven that it was in the lead up to 9/11.
“We have wait and watch policy. It doesn’t mean you don’t do anything, it means that situation is very fluid on ground, you’ve to see how it evolves. You’ve to see whether assurances that have been made publicly are actually maintained on the ground,” India’s foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla told journalists at the conclusion of his nearly week long visit to the US during the two sides also worked in tandem at the UN to, among other things, press the new regime in Kabul and its overlords to ensure a more representational government in Afghanistan.
The remarks came even as chief of Pakistan’s notorious intelligence agency ISI, which fostered Taliban, rushed to Kabul to oversee the formation of a government its unelected proxies have not managed to put together in two weeks since they overran the country.
While some Taliban critics likened the visit of ISI honcho Lt Gen Faiz Hamid to that of a victorious general riding into a captured capital, other analysts saw it as an effort by the Pakistan to bring together warring Taliban factions now fighting for the spoils of power.
“Taliban have not won any hearts and minds. They have simply exploited the flawed policy of a fatigued American president — not necessarily the United States itself — and they are being micromanaged by Pakistan’s notorious intelligence agency, the ISI,” Afghanistan’s deposed vice-president Amrullah Saleh said in a comment published in the Daily Mail.
“It is the Pakistanis who are in charge as effectively a colonial power. But this is not going to last because they and their clients will not be able to erect a functioning economy or create a civil service,” he added, alleging the Taliban’s spokesperson in Kabul “receives directions, literally every hour, from the Pakistani embassy.”
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In the US, the Indian delegation had to come to grips with a Biden Presidency that had dramatically reframed Washington’s global outlook, deciding that it will cease being the world’s policeman and stop undertaking nation-building missions. Instead, Washington will focus its energies in maintaining US primacy vis-a-vis China and Russia, allowing them a free run in Afghanistan if they choose to do so.
Some of these issues will feature in the upcoming 2+2 dialogue between the two countries in November. The two sides are also exploring the possibility of a visit to Washington by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of a visit to the United Nations in September.
In fact, while some in Pakistan are gloating over the triumph of the Beijing-Islamabad in Afghanistan, ostensibly at the expense of Washington and New Delhi, some of Pakistan’s own analysts are warning that Islamabad will reap the whirlwind for its backing of extremists in Afghanistan.
“ISI’s public ownership of the terror tainted Taliban militia’s occupation of Afghanistan will hardly endear Pakistan to Afghans. It will further expose Taliban as a proxy and cement the neologism ‘AfPak’. It will also make sure to attract the fall out of the misadventure,” Pakistan’s former Senator Afrasiab Khattak tweeted following the ISI chief’s visit to Kabul.
Courtesy – timesofindia.indiatimes.com