LAHORE - In the backdrop of US efforts to sabotage talks with Taliban, leaders of different religious parties have asked the government to immediately start dialogue with the banned outfit and the drones should be shot down if the US challenges Pakistan’s sovereignty again along with blocking Nato supplies.
Addressing a meeting of central and provincial leadership at Mansoora on Saturday, JI chief Syed Munawar Hasan asked the government to start dialogue with Taliban without delay even after the US effort to sabotage the talks.
He said the drone attack on Friday which killed TTP top leadership was an attack on the solidarity of the country aimed at sabotaging talks with TTP.
He said federal interior minister had also accepted that the US was sabotaging the talks between Pakistan and Taliban. Munawar said Pakistan government should pull out of the US war, stop Nato supplies and refuse to bow to any pressure by Washington.
He said JI, being coalition partner of Khyber PK government, would be part of the action for a blockade to Nato supplies. He urged all the political and religious parties to unite against any US conspiracies to harm the integrity and solidarity of the country. JI chief said the US and India had been carrying out bloodshed in Pakistan in the name of Taliban since long.
He said the assassins of Major General Sanaullah were also the agents of CIA and RAW, besides those carrying out bomb blasts in Peshawar soon after the announcement of talks. Munawar said whenever Pakistan took a step for an end to terrorism, the US drone attacks sabotaged such an attempt. He added that in the past, TTP leaders Nek Muhammad and Waliur Rahman were killed in drone attacks when they were holding dialogue with Pakistan government.
Jamaatud Dawa chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed said government should shoot down the drones if the US challenges Pakistan’s sovereignty again.
He said whenever talks were initiated the US accelerated the drone attacks. He said America was the biggest hurdle in dialogue between the government and TTP. He said Pakistan government should alienate itself from this pseudo war against terrorism and stop the drone attacks, which were essential for the success of dialogue with TTP. He added that the government should also stop the Nato supply line. Chief of PML-Zia, Ijazul Haq and known defence analyst Lt-Gen (r) Hameed Gul said recent drone strike was not launched for the first time as whenever government had started a dialogue the US sabotaged the process. They proposed that the government should keep the dialogue process secret.
They maintained that US was in a state of war against Pakistan. They added that the US and India jointly damaging Pakistan. They demanded that government should revisit its foreign policy with special reference to the US.
US main hurdle in peace
Strongly condemning US drone attacks, Awami National Party (ANP) Senior Leader MNA Ghulam Ahmed Bilour has said that the United States (US) is a main hurdle in peace talks with Taliban, as it doesn’t want peace in Pakistan.
Talking to media persons at Bilour House here on Saturday, Ghulam Bilour said, “Despite killing my brother Bashir Bilour and ANP’s 800 workers by militants, I condemn the drone attack which has killed Hakimullah Mehsud.”
The ANP senior leader said that Hakimullah agreed on holding talks with the government and today (Saturday) a delegation was to leave for holding talks with TTP leadership but the US drone attack in Miranshah targeted the TTP leadership, which means that the US does not want peace in Pakistan.
He said that Taliban killed over 800 ANP’s workers from 2008 to 2013. “I have also lost my brother Bashir Ahmed Bilour in a suicide attack,” he added. Despite all, he said the US drone was condemnable. Bilour said that only Pakhtuns were being killed in Pakistan and Afghanistan whether it is USSR and US wars or even Kashmir.
“We want successful and meaningful talks between government and Taliban as we want peace in Pakistan. But the US is against peace and a main hurdle in restoration of peace in Pakistan,” he added.
Meanwhile, ANP has reiterated its stance that it was totally against US drone as instead of rooting out terrorism, such strikes have further increased it. In a statement, the party said that ANP is also against foreigners terrorists on Pakistan whether they are Uzbeks, Chechens or Arabs, thus, they should also leave Pakistan, as they are also involved in terrorism in Pakistan. It said that a meeting of the party’s organizing committee was held with Senator Haji Adeel in the chair. It said that peace process should not be halted because of the situation developed after the killing of TTP chief.
It asked the government to expedite its efforts for peace talks with Taliban and TTP should also respond positively. The participants of the meeting also said that allegations levelled by Azam Hoti against Asfandyar Wali Khan were beyond the fact and the party would stand by Asfandyar Wali Khan.