News / Asia

Karachi Violence Raises Doubts About Taliban Talks

Security officials stand near a damaged police bus at the site of an explosion in Karachi, Feb. 13, 2014.
Security officials stand near a damaged police bus at the site of an explosion in Karachi, Feb. 13, 2014.
Sharon Behn
Pakistan on Friday ended a second formal round of talks with Taliban insurgents with a warning that continued violence in the country threatened the peace dialogue. Analysts debate whether a deal with the militants will end the bloodshed in Pakistan.

It was a short meeting behind closed doors that ended with a clear statement from the government: the Taliban had to end its attacks or the peace talks would suffer.

The government negotiating team was referring to a spate of bombings in the southern city of Karachi that has left at least a dozen dead, and more injured.

In a joint statement released after the meeting, the Taliban said it regretted the violence, but added the government should also immediately stop all its anti-terrorist operations.

Taliban representative Maulana Sami-ul Haq said the two sides would continue to work towards peace.

“We will overcome these obstacles that are in our way. Our first efforts should be aimed at ensuring that neither side acts in such a way that would upset the other. In the statement, we say that we regret all anti-peace actions,” said Sami-ul Haq.

A suicide bomber targeting security forces in Karachi blew himself up on Friday, the latest in a string of attacks in the city.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for a deadly bombing there on Thursday that claimed at least 11 lives.

Previous peace pacts with the insurgents have failed.

But even if the current round of talks are successful, Muhammad Amir Rana of the Pakistan Institute for Peace Studies, cautions it will not guarantee an end to the violence.

“We have the Islamist militants operating in tribal areas," he said, "they have their affiliates in other parts of the country, we have the sectarian groups, we have the Baloch nationalists, and we have the diverse conflict landscape of Karachi where, not only the military, sectarian groups are active, but ethnic and criminal gangs are active.”

Rana says rather than focus on the Taliban, the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif must develop a national comprehensive approach to security.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Audio Top 5 Songs for Week Ending May 23

This week's lineup can be summed up like this: 'It's The Same Old Song' - but they're great songs - featuring Walk The Moon, The Weeknd, Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmakingi
X
Bernard Shusman
May 24, 2015 2:55 PM
According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.
Video

Video Effort Underway to Limit Damage from California Oil Spill

Cleanup crews are working around the clock to remove oil from the waters off the coastal city of Santa Barbara, in California. About 380,000 liters of oil may have leaked out before a rupture in an onshore, underground pipeline was discovered Tuesday. The environmental disaster hit the popular West Coast resort area before the Memorial Day weekend. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports investigators have yet to determine what caused the incident.

VOA Blogs