Leader of Pakistan’s PTI party Imran Khan wants the Taliban to be allowed to open an office in the country. The political leader made the request earlier today to reporters outside of the Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar. Khan wants the organization to be allowed to open an office in order to help peace talks in the country. Pakistan has been torn by a number of Taliban-led terrorist attacks in recent months.
The Taliban already has an office in Qatar in order to facilitate talks between the group and American leaders about its activities in Afghanistan. Last Sunday, two suicide bombers attacked and hit the All Saints Church in Peshawar, killing 85 people.
Pakistan Taliban peace talks
The office that Mr. Khan talked about this morning is to be used for the purposes of peace talks in the South Asian country. He wants the government to organize a ceasefire so that talks between the two parties might continue unabated. Mr. Khan told reporters that it would be impossible to end the conflict in the country without holding credible talks with the Taliban.
“If the government is serious about pursuing the dialogue process with the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan it should allow them to have their own office like the one opened by the Afghan Taliban in Qatar,” Mr. Khan told reporters.
Mr. Khan linked his party’s vote in recent elections to a wish for peace among the people of Pakistan. Mr. Khan leads the centrist Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, which is the country’s third largest party according to elections held earlier this year.
Pakistani Taliban activity
The increasing calls for peace talks in Pakistan follow the increasing ferocity of attacks from the Taliban in the country. Sunday’s attack on the All Saints Church was the worst attack on Christians in Pakistan, killing 85 people and injuring more than 100. The attack heightened sectarian tensions as a result of its nature.
The Taliban in Pakistan claimed responsibility for a number of attacks in the last year, and calls for peace in the country have become strong enough for the government, led by the APC, to call for peace talks with the terrorist group. Imran Khan wants to go a step further and set up an official front for the Taliban in the country in order to solidify and stabilize the talks.