Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif says he is still hopeful that talks with the Pakistani Taliban will be successful, despite the militant group ending its call for a ceasefire. Sharif says the group has to lay down its arms and respect the Constitution.
Meanwhile. the Pakistani Taliban has made it clear it does not accept the Pakistani Constitution and says it is committed to enforcing its brand of Sharia law across the country. Since the group began its campaign of violence in 2007, thousands of people have been killed in bomb and gun attacks.
In neighbouring Afghanistan, peace talks between the government and the Taliban to be held in Qatar were announced in June only to be canceled following a dispute over the Taliban displaying its banner and flag at its Doha office.
Two brothers of leading Taliban negotiator, Tayyeb Agha, have allegedly been picked in Pakistan, making peace talks even more complicated. Agha is said to be close to Mullah Omar, the Taliban’s spiritual leader.
So, can Pakistan and Afghanistan make long lasting peace with the Taliban?
Presenter: Mike Hanna
Mohammad Ismail Qasemyar, the International Advisor for the state-backed Afghan High Peace Council.
Ayaz Wazir, former member of the first Pak-Afghan Loya Jirga.
Ayesha Siddiqa, independent social scientist and author of several books including “Military Inc“.