India should be ashamed of meeting Afghan Taliban: Moeed Yusuf

Published June 28, 2021
National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf in conversation with Adil Shahzeb on DawnNewsTV.
National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf in conversation with Adil Shahzeb on DawnNewsTV.

National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf has said it is "shameless" of India to engage the Afghan Taliban in Qatar after having supported operations against the insurgent group for a long time.

Yusuf was responding to a question on DawnNews programme 'Live with Adil Shahzeb' on Monday regarding Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar’s recent stopovers in Doha to meet with the Taliban leadership in the Qatari capital twice in the last three weeks.

Earlier this month, Indian publication The Hindu quoted a senior Qatari official as confirming that Indian officials made a “quiet visit” to Doha in order to meet the Taliban’s political leadership based there.

Qatar’s Special Envoy for Counterterrorism and Mediation of Conflict Resolution Mutlaq bin Majed Al Qahtani was quoted by the paper as saying: “I understand that there has been a quiet visit by Indian officials to speak to the Taliban.”

Also read: The danger in Afghanistan

Asked whether the Indian government had opened direct talks with the Taliban during a press conference on June 10, the spokesperson of India's foreign ministry Arindam Bagchi said the country was in contact with “various stakeholders” in Afghanistan. He also referred to Jaishankar’s participation in the inaugural ceremony of the intra-Afghan talks with Taliban leaders in Doha last year.

"I want to ask this: with what [moral] standing did this Indian high-level official meet [the Taliban] there? Did they not feel ashamed?" Yusuf said when asked how Pakistan viewed the India-Taliban meetings.

"[The Indians] kept having the Taliban killed daily and kept giving funds for operations against them and today they have reached there to have talks," he added.

He said the meetings were "a matter of shame" and not a strategic move.

Yusuf emphasised that the Taliban whom the Indians had met were also "not stupid", saying he was not concerned by the contacts between India and the insurgent group amid the United States withdrawal from Afghanistan.

"You should also ask what response the [Indians] got from the [Taliban]," he added.

When pressed for the reply received by India, Yusuf only said: "Ask them and they will be ashamed more [by what has been conveyed to them]."

Speaking about Pakistan-India relations, the NSA said there were no backdoor talks or dialogue between the two countries for now, but that Pakistan was waiting for what had been conveyed to New Delhi.

‘’India contacted us [and said] that they wanted to fix [relations] and we told them we desired the restoration of pre-August 2019 status of Indian-occupied Kashmir; besides, our policy is based on the ease of life for Kashmiris,’’ he stated, adding they the Indians had been conveyed that Pakistan wanted to see the desired change on the ground.

Asked about the possibility of Pakistan getting the heat of the US-China rivalry, Yusuf said the country might face a tough situation if it gave up on its principles. "If you don’t take a stand then when the elephants fight, the grass gets trampled," he added.

The NSA remarked that no one was stopping the European Union and US to invest in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and other projects in the country.

Opinion

What a tangled web

What a tangled web

So poorly kept is this secret about the opposition’s real hopes and no plans that even the government has figured it out.
Climate threat over South Asia
Updated 26 Oct 2021

Climate threat over South Asia

Water shortages, drought, floods or landslides and tsunamis are not constrained by national boundaries.
Losing heritage
26 Oct 2021

Losing heritage

It’s not a good idea to turn Mohatta into a college.
The long impasse
Updated 25 Oct 2021

The long impasse

Management of Pakistan-India tensions is likely to remain the main focus of sporadic backchannel efforts.

Editorial

26 Oct 2021

Perfect in every way

GLORIOUS. Gratifying. Liberating. Pakistan’s thumping victory over India in their opening fixture of the T20 World...
26 Oct 2021

Balochistan CM’s exit

ON Sunday, Jam Kamal Khan Alyani’s name was added to the long list of chief ministers of Balochistan who ...
Minister’s odd logic
26 Oct 2021

Minister’s odd logic

THE government’s contradictions and confusion appear to have no end when it comes to dealing with the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan.
25 Oct 2021

Party to a vile campaign

THE PTI government’s hostility towards the media and its intolerance for dissent is well known. The target of ...
Financial crisis
Updated 25 Oct 2021

Financial crisis

DESPITE having progressed to ‘very good step’ and being ‘close to concluding the agreement’ a few days back,...
25 Oct 2021

Morals and Pemra

TIME and again, Pemra has come under fire for issuing arbitrary instructions to TV channels on matters ranging from...