If Pakistan Does Not Stop Supporting Radical and Extremist Groups

By: Farhad

5 Oct 2023
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If Pakistan Does Not Stop Supporting Radical and Extremist Groups

Dawn | Pakistan and Afghanistan Border

Pakistan’s relationship with Afghanistan had many ups and downs since its establishment in August 1947. Despite religious, ethnic, economic, and cultural ties between Afghanistan and Pakistan running deep and wide, the two countries have frequently been at odds with one another and it was due to Afghanistan voted against Pakistan’s membership to determine the fate of the Pashtun tribe who lived under the British India, and this act made Pakistan stand against Afghanistan and interfere in the country’s affairs. On the other hand, Pakistan has created a serious threat to South Asian and Central Asian countries by accommodating and supporting Islamic fundamentalist and various terrorist groups for many years. International terrorists who have shelter in the border areas of Pakistan go to Afghanistan, India, and other countries from time to time. to carry out destructive attacks to destabilize the region and achieve the goals that Pakistan is pursuing.


Tensions between Kabul and Islamabad during the reign of Sardar Mohammad Daud Khan

Pakistan announced in March 1949 that tribal areas are an integral part of the country’s territory. The reaction of the Afghan government and parliament in July of the same year was decisive; Unilateral cancellation of the Durand Treaty. Since then, India has stood by Afghanistan as a natural ally. Since then, Afghanistan’s foreign policy revolved around the issue of Pashtunistan. Prime Minister Shah Mahmood (1953-1946) was forced to resign due to inefficiency in managing the issue of Pashtunistan.

Dawood Khan, the then president of Afghanistan put the three priorities of solving the Pashtunistan problem, economic development, and the country’s non-dependence on big powers at the top of his plans. The first axis caused a crisis in relations with Pakistan. The crisis reached its peak when in 1955 the political offices of the two countries in Kabul and Peshawar were occupied and destroyed by protesters.

After that, the Loya Jirga (great meeting of tribal leaders) in Kabul obliged the government to solve the Pashtunistan issue and purchase weapons by any means possible. At the same time, Pakistan was gaining active membership in the CENTO (Baghdad Pact), which played the role of a security belt to protect the Western sphere of influence in Asia. Pakistan became the front line of defense against the West and as a strategic ally of America in the region, it had determined its long-term path.

Afghanistan needed foreign aid for economic development, but the donors were limited and specific. Although Afghanistan had the idea of establishing a balance between the two poles, when Richard Nixon, the vice president of the United States, visited Afghanistan in 1954, it became clear that the United States did not want to invest in Afghanistan. America’s unspoken logic was clear; It is impossible to be friends with two enemies at the same time. America provided military aid to Pakistan in 1953 but ignored Afghanistan’s similar protest and request (Mohammed Sadiq Farhang, Afghanistan in the Five Centuries, Qom, 1374: 681).

In such circumstances, the historic trip of Nikita Khrushchev, the then leader of the Soviet Union, to Kabul took place in 1955. This trip was considered a turning point in the relations between the two countries. The Soviet Union, since then, fully supported Afghanistan in political, economic, educational, and counseling dimensions and supported Kabul’s position on the issue of Pashtunistan. Dawood Khan did not neglect the third priority and sent his foreign minister, Naeem Khan, to the meeting of the founders of the Non-Aligned Movement in Bandung, Indonesia in 1955, which intensified the opposition between Pakistan and Afghanistan.


Pakistan’s intervention through Mujahideen in Afghanistan affairs

After the former Soviet Union attacked Afghanistan in 1979, the heads of the jihadist groups of Pakistan were placed in Afghanistan. Pakistan was pursuing several goals by cultivating religious groups. First, replace Pashtun nationalism with Islamism. Secondly, employed Islamic groups in Kabul so that the government of these groups would not interfere in the internal affairs of Pakistan on the one hand and be far from India and establish a close connection to Pakistan on the other hand. But after the victory of Mujahideen, the dream of Pakistan did not become a reality and Pakistan turned to another conspiracy by holding negative propaganda against the fledgling Mujahideen government and sparking civil wars by Golbedin Hekmatyar, turning Kabul into a ruined city and creating the Taliban movement by discrediting the Mujahideen in the eyes of the people.


Establishment of the Taliban movement by Pakistan ISI

Pakistan’s policy towards Afghanistan was an extension of the same policy that it had planned in the 1970s and 1980s. If Mujahideen were present in Pakistan at that time, then in 1994, the Taliban movement was created and supported by ISI. With the financial support of some countries and intelligence planning, Pakistan overthrew the Mujahideen government in 1996 and once again rekindled the flame of civil wars throughout the country, in which a large number of Afghan citizens were killed and injured in four years. The public assets were destroyed and the country turned into a damaged region. Continuing its destructive policy, Pakistan set fire to the northern vineyards, destroyed the forests, blew up the statues of Bamiyan, and turned the military facilities into scrap metal and transferred them to Pakistan.


Pakistan tried to gain the seat of Afghanistan in the UN to the Taliban, which shows all the direct interventions of Pakistan and the affiliation of the terrorist group of the Taliban to this country.


 Fall of Taliban and continuation of Pakistan’s interventions in Afghanistan affairs

Later, after the September 11th attacks, which were planned in Afghanistan, Pakistan presented itself as an ally of the United States in the “war against terrorism”, but sheltered the leaders of the Taliban in Pakistan, after a while again supported the defunct movement and used them against the Afghan government. According to strategists, Pakistan wants a stake in Afghanistan to ensure that the country does not have a pro-Indian government. In the past two decades, Pakistan equipped the Taliban with weapons and ammunition, gave their forces suicide and mine-making training, and in some cases directly intervened, killing more than 40,000 military forces and thousands of civilians. In 2019, Pakistan’s PM  Imran Khan said that the administration of Afghanistan should be handed over to a temporary government to ensure peace in the country. Pakistan accompanied and supported the Taliban until the takeover of power on August 15, 2021, and General Faiz Hameed, the head of Pakistan’s military intelligence (ISI) came to Kabul on September 5, 2021, to resolve the Taliban’s differences in the structure of their temporary cabinet.

Pakistan tried to gain the seat of Afghanistan in the UN to the Taliban. Photo: Naseer Ahmad Faiq, chargé d’affaires of Afghanistan seat in United Nations.


Pakistan’s interventions after the Republic collapse in August 2021

One month after the fall of the republic to the hands of the Taliban,  on August 25, 2021, exactly ten days after the fall of Kabul, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi traveled to Central Asian countries and Iran to lobby for the Taliban and requested establishment a structure called “foreign ministers of Afghanistan neighbors” excluding India from this process. Pakistan requested the first session of the foreign ministers, which was held on  September 8, 2021, virtually under Pakistan forging minister leadership three more meetings were held in Iran, China, and Uzbekistan in person, and the acting foreign minister of the Taliban administration was also present at the China and Uzbekistan meeting to initiate the interaction of Afghanistan’s neighboring countries with the Taliban. Pakistan continued to try to make the countries of the region recognize the illegitimate administration of the Taliban in consultative meetings, such as Moscow format, asking the extraordinary meeting of the foreign ministers of the “Organization of Islamic Cooperation” about Afghanistan in Islamabad and other meetings, which all show Pakistan’s direct intervention in It is the affairs of Afghanistan.

In the last two years, in the region and the United Nations General Assembly, Pakistan has also tried to bring the world’s interaction closer with the Taliban through the support of its aligned countries. Pakistan tried to gain the seat of Afghanistan in the UN to the Taliban, which shows all the direct interventions of Pakistan and the affiliation of the terrorist group of the Taliban to this country. Still, with all these unsuccessful efforts of Pakistan, the political deputy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Taliban recently spoke about the failure of the diplomatic policy of this group. He stated that “Despite two years of efforts, not a single country was ready to recognize us” and that all Pakistan’s efforts were in vain.


Pakistan’s destructive interventions at the regional level

Pakistan has not only been interfering in the affairs of Afghanistan for many years, but it has repeatedly threatened the borders of India, Iran, Central Asia, and other regions of the world through its terrorists. Terrorists trained in Pakistan have repeatedly carried out suicide attacks in different parts of the world and caused the death of hundreds of innocent people in regional and extra-regional countries. The deadly attacks of of the terrorist group known as Laskar e Taiba trained in Pakistan in 2006 and later in 2008 in Mumbai India which killed more than 400 in both attacks and injured more than a thousand.  people, attack on the Indian parliament in 2011. In 2019 a suicide bombing by Jaish-e-Mohammed in Jammu and Kashmir mounted international pressure on Pakistan to crack down on militants operating illegally within its borders. Jaish-e-Mohammed, Hizbul Mujahidin, Ansarullah, Uzbekistan Islamic, movement, rocket launching on the borders of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan in 2022 from the soil of Afghanistan, attacks in Shah Charagh and Sista Baluchistan of  Iran which killed and injured dozens of people and many more cases indicate Pakistan’s established and accommodated terrorist groups became viruses to the region.

If Pakistan does not stop supporting radical and extremist groups, the countries of the region and the world will face more security problems that will be difficult to contain in the future.

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