Taliban mediator Samiul Haq on Sunday said the government and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) should focus on peace talks rather than a ceasefire.
Addressing a conference in Akora Khattak, head of the Taliban committee said that those talking about a possible military action were “enemies of Pakistan” because war benefited none. He added that the rest of the world wanted war instead of peace in Pakistan and both sides would have to show patience.
He also said that the media and TV anchors were advocating war while scholars were backing peace talks. Sami regretted that “artificial barriers” were created every time peace talks started moving in the right direction.
The cleric also said that both the government and Taliban would be held responsible if there was an escalation in hostilities. The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Sami chief, who is also known as the “Father of Taliban”, said that the country would have to unite to “douse the fire lit by foreigners”.
He also said that hope was not lost and the peace talks between the government and Taliban committees would resume soon.
Separately, Professor Ibrahim Khan, another Taliban interlocutor said that the government and Taliban have yet to begin “real talks”.
Addressing a gathering on Sunday, the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) senator said that the government, army and Taliban should move the dialogue process forward with sincerity. He said that they were facing several problems from both the sides in the peace process. The government has not released Taliban prisoners so far, he added.
He appealed to the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan to extend the ceasefire and stop attacking security forces and defence installations. He said that the army should not pound militant hideouts with fighter jets and helicopters.
The JI cleric said that the army should stop operation, asserting that both parties should take dialogue process seriously. The Taliban negotiator said both the government and Taliban committees should meet Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif, adding that the army should trust the democratic government.
Ibrahim said that the dialogue process was the only way forward for peace no matter how much time it takes.
Over the treason case against former president Pervez Musharraf, the Taliban committee member said that it was the responsibility of the federation to take the matter to its logical end. No institution should back the criminals, he added.
He said that the federal government would be solely responsible if Musharraf was sent abroad.
“He (Musharraf) never abided by the constitution. He brought others’ war into Pakistan. The government will be held responsible if Musharraf was sent from the country safely. The law is for every common and special person, so it should be implemented indiscriminately,” said the JI cleric.