Pakistani govt has no authority to hold dialogue: TTP
26 June, 2013
PESHAWAR: The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed that the government of Pakistan does not have the authority to hold talks.
TTP spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan has said that if the group sees that the elected government is able to take a stand against the country's intelligence agencies, only then will the option of talks be considered. In an email statement issued on Tuesday, TTP Eshan said that the TTP leadership considers Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Muhammad Omar as their supreme commander and has taken an oath of jihad on his hand. "TTP fighters are always ready to obey Omar's commands," he said.
Ehsan accused the media of doing negative propaganda against the Taliban to spread mistrust among its members. He said that some groups in the guise of Afghan Taliban tried to attack the TTP but the interference of Afghan Taliban on the demand of TTP foiled the conspiracy against the latter.
Commenting on the offer to resume peace talks with the newly elected Pakistani government led by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), the spokesman said the TTP is closely monitoring the policies and activities of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and PML-N in the Centre.
"If we see the that the political government is able to control the intelligence agencies of Pakistan and is capable of taking independent decisions then the TTP could re-think holding peace talks with the government," Ehsan said. He lamented that whenever the TTP and Pakistani government have made progress on holding peace talks the Americans, with the ground support of Pakistani intelligence agencies, have repeatedly killed TTP leaders.
He claimed that in the recent past when the newly elected government and TTP were planning to hold peace talks, prominent leader of TTP, Waliur Rehman was targeted by the US through drone strikes with the help of Pakistani intelligence agencies to sabotage the peace efforts and to make rifts within the TTP ranks. He said it was rumoured on media that TTP commander Hakeemullah Mehsud was involved in the targeting of Waliur Rehman.
The Taliban spokesman said that after the killing of Waliur Rehman, the Shura of TTP unanimously decided to suspend peace talks with the government of Pakistan. He said that 80 percent of information for US drone strikes that target TTP leaders is provided by the intelligence agencies of Pakistan. Ehsan denied involvement of his group's fighters in the killing of two PTI MPAs, saying that the TTP is not involved in the killings, rather indigenous agencies are to be blamed. He said that political parties who were coalition partners in the previous government were targeted because of their wrong policies.
Ehsan said the TTP is neither involved in targeting polio vaccination teams nor has differences with them. He said the group has some reservations regarding the programme and if they were redressed there will be no controversy. He said that polio vaccinators are involved in spying in the guise of polio elimination programme, like in the case of Osama Bin Laden, a reference to American CIA's use of a Pakistani doctor to run a fake vaccine programme in Abbottabad to trace the slain al Qaeda chief.
Eshan asked Mehsud tribe's internally displaced persons (IDPs) to abstain from returning to South Waziristan Agency "because the TTP fighters are still launching successful attacks on the military checkpoints" in the tribal agency. He claimed that the TTP network is present from Kashmir to Khyber and from Karachi to Balochistan, and is successfully operating and launching attacks against the government.
Ehsan also said that the group is against Hamid Karzai, Indian and Pakistani intelligence agencies and it is wrongly being accused of having ties with India or the Karzai government.
The group welcomed the opening of Afghan Taliban's office in Doha for the purpose of bringing peace to Afghanistan and the region. Ehsan said TTP welcomes the decision of opening political office of "Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan" (IEA) in Doha, adding that the TTP is a branch of IEA.
The spokesman said opening of the office in Doha for peace talks is in the interest of Muslims. Ehsan said.