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Mullah Baradar: Taliban meets in Pakistan over peace talks

REPORT-3-Afg-23-12-2020

The Taliban’s deputy leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar has said that all decisions about the peace process are being finalized in consultation with the Taliban’s leadership and the Taliban’s cleric council in Pakistan.

Baradar made the remarks while visiting wounded members of the Taliban in the Pakistan city of Karachi, saying that the Taliban’s leadership exists in Pakistan.

The Taliban have so far not commented about the place of Baradar’s meeting with wounded members of the group.

Meanwhile, sources close to the Taliban have said that during his trip to Pakistan, Baradar also met the Taliban senior military commanders and discussions were held about reducing violence.

Footage shared on social media purportedly shows that Baradar met with Taliban supporters in Karachi.

“Here, though, everything has passed us by, but we are compelled to come because there are not a few people here, our entire leadership is present here in this place (Pakistan),” said Baradar. 

He continued: “When we conduct partial or general negotiations there (Doha), we share the whole process with the leaders and the Ulema council here. We receive back their guidance and act upon it."

Reactions in Afghanistan

“They were already there, but now they have confessed it. For this reason the role of Pakistan has been critical in the process,” said Haji Din Mohammad, the deputy head of the High Council of National Reconciliation.

“It is said that the Taliban has gone there to conduct consultations with their political and military leadership so that they can come up with a positive response to the pressure by the international community,” said Faiz Mohammad Zaland, a university lecturer.

“Pakistan has not put any new pressure on the Taliban to accept the ceasefire or reduce violence,” said Sami Yousufzai, a freelance journalist.

This comes days after the Afghan Minister of Interior Massoud Andarabi said that the Taliban’s Peshawar Council has ordered the Taliban fighters to increase their attacks on major cities and towns of Afghanistan.