ISLAMABAD: In response to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s allegations, Pakistan on Tuesday rejected that it differentiates between terrorist groups.
Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria said that Pakistan condemns all forms and manifestation of terrorism and it is committed in the fight against this menace.
Pakistan itself is the biggest victim of terrorism in which thousands of our security personnel have sacrificed their lives, he said.
The spokesperson said Pakistan is making serious efforts for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.
He said Pakistan hosted the first round of direct talks between Afghan government and Taliban. He, however, said Pakistan alone is not responsible for bringing the Taliban back to the table.
He said the Quadrilateral Coordination Group was constituted to achieve the objective of peace and stability in Afghanistan.
The spokesman said peace in the neighbouring country is in the interest of Pakistan.
Earlier on Monday, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani implored Pakistan to battle the Taliban instead of trying to bring them to peace talks.
“I want to make it clear that we no longer expect Pakistan to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table,” Ghani said while addressing both houses of the Afghan parliament.
“But we expect them to launch a military operation against their sanctuaries and leadership based on their soil. If they can’t target them they should hand them over to our judiciary.”
“There are no good or bad terrorists… Pakistan should act on them as a responsible government,” he said.
Ghani’s remarks reflect his frustration after he expended substantial political capital since coming to power in 2014 in courting Pakistan in the hope of pressuring the militants to the negotiating table.
He vowed a tough military response against the insurgents and pledged to enforce legal punishments, including executions of convicted militants.
“The time for amnesty is over,” he said.
“For the Taliban who are ready to end bloodshed, we have left the door open for talks. But the door will not be open forever.”
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid rebuffed Ghani’s remarks, saying the group would press on with their jihad against the US-backed government.
The Taliban earlier this month announced the start of their annual spring offensive, vowing “large-scale attacks” across Afghanistan.
The announcement came even after a four-country group comprising Afghanistan, the United States, China and Pakistan held meetings since January aimed at ending the drawn-out conflict.