News / Asia

Experts: Military Strikes Against Taliban Not End to Peace Talks

Experts: Military Strikes Against Taliban Not End to Peace Talksi
X
Kokab Farshori
May 26, 2014 9:09 PM
The Pakistani government is taking a more proactive attitude toward Islamist militants after peace talks between the two sides failed to produce any meaningful results. the government has not given up on peace talks with the Pakistani Taliban, it has decided not to wait until the militants strike.
Kokab Farshori
The Pakistani government is taking a more proactive attitude toward Islamist militants after peace talks between the two sides failed to produce any meaningful results.

The Pakistani Taliban, known as Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan or TTP, has been fighting against the government of Pakistan since 2007.  Its goal, in attacking Pakistani law enforcement personnel and civilians, is to disrupt Pakistan’s alliance with the United States in the war against terrorism.   Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s government has held peace talks with the TTP in recent months,  but there has been no breakthrough - and last week the Pakistani military conducted a major operation in North Wazirstan and killed what it termed close to 60 terrorists.

Experts like Lisa Curtis of the Heritage Foundation see it as a proactive approach against the militants.

"I think what the government of Pakistan is doing is pursuing a simultaneous talk and fight strategy.  So, I would see this recent offensive in North Wazirstan as part of that overall strategy," said Curtis.

But Moeed Yusuf, with Washington’s U.S. Institute of Peace, says it will take a long time to fight this kind of insurgency.

"What this is going to do is to strike the center of gravity of a number of groups.  So, it is going to strike their physical presence in a way that they will have to be on the run.  But over time they will regroup, reconvene, find other places and this process will continue," said Yusuf.

In Pakistan, opinion on the talks with the TTP has been divided.  While some political parties still want to hold peace talks, others are not hopeful about the prospects of success.  Yusef says it's not clear though whether the government has enough leverage to achieve any results.

"Ideally for the state of Pakistan, talks would continue with the people who want to talk or with the people who feel that they are defeated and will come and negotiate on the state’s terms.  I don’t think the state has got the upper hand to that point yet," he said.

But Lisa Curtis says the Pakistani government can hold talks from the position of strength.

"I think the fact that the military has shown that it is willing to strike against the militants when it sees that it is the best option to move forward.  I think the fact that they have demonstrated that will help Pakistan get the leverage in the talks with the TTP," she said.

Many experts believe that if the recent strikes against the Pakistan Taliban manage to decapitate the TTP’s strength, then the peace talks can bear some positive results.

You May Like

Myanmar Fighting Poses Dilemma for China

To gain some insight into conflict, VOA’s Steve Herman spoke with Min Zaw Oo, director of ceasefire negotiation and implementation at Myanmar Peace Center More

Australia Concerned Over Islamic State 'Brides'

Canberra believes there are between 30 and 40 Australian women who have taken part in terror attacks or are supporting the Islamic State terror network More

Recreational Marijuana Use Now Legal in Washington, DC

Law allows adults 21 and over to privately possess and smoke 0.05 kilogram of pot, and to grow small amounts of the plant More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More