Member National Assembly and Director General Strategic Studies Institute Islamabad (SSII) Dr. Shireen M. Mazari on Friday said that the next few weeks would witness a progress on talks with the Taliban. She pointed out, “the government has to deal with multiple layers of terrorism and hence a progressive strategy for talks has to be evolved.” The Parliamentarian identified 15 major groups and 25 small groups of Taliban. She asserted that these negotiations were to be carried out through a structured mechanism that brings the Taliban who are willing to talk, on the negotiating table; while separating the other groups unwilling to talk. She asserted, “All this has to be done remaining within the constitutional parameters.” Dr. Mazari pointed out that if talks fail, option for military action will be sought and hence there might be a strong blow back of terrorism in the country resulting in more causalities. She pointed out that multifaceted threats of terrorism in Pakistan were due to extremist mentality, local as well as international actors.
Dr. Shireen M. Mazari was hosting a 5 member high-level delegation from China Center for Contemporary World Studies (CCCWS). CCCWS is a think tank of international department of the Communist Party of China and responsible of Party’s international liaison. Dr Shireen Mazari highlighted the problems inside Pakistan in the context of regional geo-political situation and terrorism. “We believe for Pakistan, role of China in South Asia is very important in developing strategic network of Gwadar” she said. Pointing towards US destabilizing policies towards South Asia, she said it was of vital importance that China plays a dynamic role to stabilize the region.
Former Foreign Minister and Foreign Secretary Mr. Inam-ul-Haq pointed towards the deadlock in US Congress between the Republicans and President Obama that will lead to world economic problems. He also highlighted the deteriorating situation in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya. “US leaves destruction anywhere it enters”, he said. “We think that the era of sole super power of the world, USA is coming to an end. It is time that countries like China takes greater responsibility in the world affairs and assert themself.” He appreciated China’s diplomacy in present Syrian crisis that hindered US interference into the country.
Pointing towards destabilizing Iranian economy due to international sanctions, he asserted that China must play a positive role being a member of G+1 group and make sure that the region does not move towards instability. He said, “The next few year will determine what kind of a world emerges and we are convinced that China will play a leading role.”
CCCWS delegation was headed by Dr. Hu Hao. He pointed out the resentment of Pakistani public against US drone strikes; citing Pak-US relations as a compromise on Pakistan’s sovereignty. Dr. Mazari also mentioned that an All Parties Conference (APC) was held recently which tried to bring all political entities on the same page, the APC condemned the previous governments in Pakistan that made commitments with the US government against Pakistani public will. She predicted a shift in Pak-US relations in the coming years from the previous carte-blanche status that the latter enjoyed. “Pak-US relations will loosen up and undergo a decline leading to a less intensity of interactions”, she said. Future visit of PM Nawaz Sharif will determine the contours of Pak-US relations for the near future. She also said, “We’ll try to make US understand our concerns regarding sovereignty and not dictate us on internal matters.”
In the end Mr Haq concluded by saying that Pakistan does not want to terminate its relationship with the USA, but would like to redefine the relationship based on fundamental equality between nations. Pakistan wants a relationship that takes into account Pakistan’s interests and does not serve US agenda solely.