Reuters, 14 March 2016
The agency reports that the Taleban Supreme (actually: Leadership) Council, after “secret meetings with Pakistani officials about two weeks ago … met at an undisclosed location and voted to reject the talks scheduled for early March with the Afghan government, according to a council member” – indicating how badly prepared the short-notice ultimatum to the Taleban to join peace talks was. But also, that the Taleban are preparing to make further military gains this year.
The quoted analysis by Michael Kugelman of the Woodrow Wilson Institute at Washington, though, that “Pakistan’s trump card – safe [Taleban] havens on its soil – is in danger of being snatched away,” seems to be unrealistic. Without logistical and operational fall-back and access for funding through Pakistan, the Taleban would be lost in landlocked Afghanistan.
This article was last updated on 9 Mar 2020