Imran Khan's Suggestion to US - Strike Deal With Taliban On Swat Pattern

. 2/23/09

Prominent Pakistani cricketer-turned politician Imran Khan has counseled US to strike a deal with Taliban in Afghanistan on the pattern of Swat pact, saying that the real threat was from al-Qaeda.

"The only way forward is dialogue, which is what (Afghan President) Hamid Karzai is finally saying. You have to start talking to the Taliban," Khan said.

He warned that US President Barack Obama's Afghan policy is "exactly the same way as the mess" made by the previous Bush administration. Pakistan had "absolutely no choice" other than to strike a deal with Taliban in Swat.

"My biggest worry is that the Obama administration is going exactly the same way as the mess made by the Bush administration. Its like the line from Alice in Wonderland.

When you dot know where you're, every road takes you there," Khan was quoted as saying by CNN in an interview.

Khan termed the peace deal with Taliban as "fairly moderate". He also asked Obama to stop the drone attacks inside Pakistani tribal areas, saying there can be no military solution to insurgency.

"The Americans should have isolated al-Qaeda from the Taliban. The Taliban had nothing to do with terrorism. Yes, they were fundamentalists. But they were not terrorists."

"The US attacks against the Taliban and then not being able to deliver on the promises of good governance system, brought things to the current mess in Afghanistan," he added.

Source: The Hindu

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