Pakistan ISI Chief In Kabul As Taliban Finalise Afghanistan Government Formation

The Taliban have promised a more “inclusive” government (File)

New Delhi:

Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) Chief, Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed, is in Kabul to meet the Taliban leadership, which is in advanced stage of government formation.

Gen Hameed, leading a delegation of senior Pakistan leaders, is in Kabul at the invitation of the Taliban, according to reports in Afghan media.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, visiting Pakistan, was told by Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Saturday that Islamabad will “assist” the Taliban to form an inclusive administration in neighbouring Afghanistan.

The Pakistan Observer reported that Gen Bajwa said in the meeting that Pakistan will “continue to fight for peace and stability in Afghanistan, as well as assist the formation of an inclusive administration”.

The Taliban, which seized Kabul on August 15 after sweeping across most of the country, have faced resistance in the Panjshir Valley, where there have been reports of heavy fighting and casualties.

The Taliban have postponed the formation of a new government in Afghanistan for next week as it struggles to give shape to a broad-based and inclusive administration acceptable to the international community.

This is the second time that the Taliban have delayed the government formation since their toppling of the US-backed Afghanistan government. Initially, the group was expected to announce the formation of the new government led by its co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar on Friday.

Afghanistan’s new rulers have pledged to be more accommodating than during their first stint in power, which also came after years of conflict – first the Soviet invasion of 1979, and then a bloody civil war.

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That regime was notorious for its brutal interpretation of Islamic law, and its treatment of women, who were forced inside and denied access to school and work.

They have promised a more “inclusive” government that represents Afghanistan’s complex ethnic makeup — though women are unlikely to be included at the top levels.

Thousands of Afghan nationals and foreigners have fled the country to escape the new Taliban regime and to seek asylum in different nations, including the US and many European nations, resulting in total chaos and deaths.

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