Arbitration committee terms postponement of joint meeting of both committees by govt committee as regrettable

Arbitration committee terms postponement of joint meeting of both committees by govt committee as regrettable

meet-hAKORA KHATTAK: The arbitration committee has termed the decision of postponement of meeting of both committees by government committee as regrettable. The committee also regretted over the incident of killing 23 FC personnel by Taliban. The committee said that if the government committee had held meeting they both committees would have taken decision for moving forward. Meanwhile the arbitration committee member Professor Ibrahim Khan said a deadlock had been reached between Taliban and government negotiators, adding that there are no horns and tale of the deadlock. He said that the position of the arbitration committee should not be made disputed. He said if the position of the arbitration committee was made disputed then the dialogue process would go far away. He said the arbitration committee wants peace in country. The meeting of the arbitration committee was held under the chairmanship of Maulana Samiul Haq at Akora Khattack. The committee nominated by the Taliban discussed the situation following the killing of 23 FC personnel by the Mohmand Agency Taliban.

While reading out the communiqué of the meeting along with Professor Muhammad Ibrahim Khan, committee coordinator Mualana Syed Yousaf Shah said a ceasefire had almost been reached.

The declaration says it was regrettable that the government’s committee, branding the mediators as the Taliban, had refused to meet them. The declaration said the meeting of both committees was due to held at the residence of Maulana Samiul Haq but when Maualan yousuf Shah contacted government committee coordinator Irfan Siddiqui said it is the opinion of the government committee that in the current circumstances meeting could not be held. The declaration said the position of the Taliban formed committee is of arbitrator, adding that the government committee also accepts this position. The arbitration committee did not consider itself separate from the government committee, adding that it is regrettable that the government second time refused to meet the arbitration committee instead of fixing time.

The declaration said the arbitration also grieved over the incident of Mohmand Agency. The committee said if the government committee had met with them then they could have find way for moving forward for stopping such incidents in future and for restoration of peace in the country. The declaration says it is regrettable that the government committee while terming arbitration committee as Taliban postponed the meeting. The declaration says it is said on the TV channels that the government and army have decided to carry out military operation. The committee said the military operation is not the solution, adding that the military operations in past 10 years did not bore positive results. The committee said hundreds and thousands of innocent women and children would be forced on migration and thousands would be killed and new wave of terrorism would take whole country into grip.

The declaration says till Sunday they had reached near the ceasefire, adding that during the meeting of today both committee would have discussed the recent incidents of terrorism and find ways and means to stop such incidents. The committee said it has desired to meet the powerful circles directly for including them in the process of brining peace in country, adding that it is reality that the government also could not contact these powerful circles.

The declaration said the joint working of both committees is crucial, adding that prime minister should consult and listen both committees with open heart, adding that the purpose of both committees is restoration of peace.

Meanwhile replying the queries of the media Professor Muhammad Ibrahim Khan expressed regret that the government committee considered them Taliban. Professor Ibrahim said the committee would not defend the criminal acts of the Taliban.

He said that a deadlock had been reached between the Taliban and government negotiators.

He said that Maulana Samiul Haq had called Irfan Siddiquie, who had informed him that the scheduled meeting between the two sides would not take place. Professor Khan appealed both parties to abstain from violent activities.

He further said that the mediators wanted to maintain their positions and clarified that they were just mediators and not party in the issue.

He also said that both the committees should sit together and not meeting was a worry-some development. Moreover, he said that details and developments of the talks could not be fully shared with the media.

“We are passing through a difficult time, it’s a difficult task assigned to us…but we are doing all this for the nation and for the sake of peace,” he said.

Replying to a question, he said the Taliban-proposed committee has not so far sought clarification from militants over the killing of FC soldiers, adding Taliban have issued some clarification to media in this regard.

“We have appealed both the sides to end violence and bloodshed,” he said.

Regarding a question about deadlock in the govt-Taliban talks, he admitted that there is a deadlock.

“Yes, of course, the deadlock prevails…it’s deplorable that they (govt committee) denied meeting with us at the last minute.”

Ibrahim said his committee will not play role as a party. “Let us not be partial, the peace process will derail if we became a party in the negotiation process.”

To another question, he said decisions of the committee could not be disclosed at the initial stage. “We are surrounded by difficulties…but still we are hopeful.”

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