Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday suggested an interim setup in Afghanistan as a possible solution to an apparent impasse in the ongoing peace process, while blaming the Afghan government for the stalemate in talks, Pakistani media reported.
According to Pakistan’s Express Tribune, “the suggestion came during PM Khan’s interaction with journalists at his office here on Monday.”
“The Afghan government was a hurdle in peace process that was insisting that Taliban should talk to it,” said Khan, as quoted by the Express Tribune.
The premier also confirmed that he had canceled a scheduled meeting with Taliban leadership due to objections raised by the Afghan government.
Khan said that the Afghan peace process can only be successful if there is a neutral interim government, which can hold free and transparent elections to be participated by all the stakeholders.
“How much time it will take to set up an interim government and hold free elections, I cannot say,” he added.
The peace process in Afghanistan is aimed at ending the longest war that the US has ever fought. The Taliban and U.S. representatives last month in Qatar negotiated a draft, but no final deal on withdrawal of U.S.-led international forces and arrangements that the Taliban ensures militants would not use Afghanistan to stage attacks against the U.S. and its allies.
Pakistan’s Prime Minister noted that the US had acknowledged and appreciated Pakistan’s role for bringing peace and stability in Afghanistan.
Khan said the US thought it was only Pakistan that could bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.