Pakistan calls for world to engage with Taliban government


Pakistan’s national security adviser, Moeed Yusuf has called on the world to engage with the Taliban’s caretaker government in Afghanistan or risk a return to the instability that characterised the group’s last era in power three decades ago.

Moeed Yusuf urged the international community not to repeat past mistakes, “We are trying to make sure that the world understands the importance of not making the mistakes of the past again.

“For us, it is an imperative to seek peace and stability in Afghanistan, that is what we are focused on,” he said.

Pakistan, Afghanistan’s southeastern neighbour, has repeatedly called for world powers to engage with the new government and to provide immediate humanitarian and other aid to stave off an imminent economic collapse.

On Monday, several countries pledged more than $1.1bn in food aid at a United Nations conference to address immediate poverty and hunger concerns in Afghanistan.

Roughly $10bn in Afghan central bank reserves, however, remain frozen at banks abroad, notably with the US Federal Reserve.

Yusuf called for world powers to engage with the Taliban rather than to freeze ties with the government led by the armed group, which waged a bloody 20-year battle against occupying US and NATO forces that killed tens of thousands of Afghan civilians and security forces.

“By engaging, you essentially are saying we are constructively going to try and look at how to help Afghanistan for the sake of the average Afghan,” said Yusuf.

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