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Now There is No Room for the Taliban in Tribal Areas

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It is clear to all that the rulers of Pakistan have played an active role in the creation of the Taliban in Afghanistan and tribal areas situated on the Pak-Afghan border. Rulers have used the Taliban for launching a war in tribal areas, as they have been paid by the United States for beginning this game. Actually, it is an open secret that the U.S. has created the Taliban and has been providing full support to the Taliban as they are carrying the U.S. agenda forward. The Taliban has received millions of dollars from the U.S.

Though the U.S. and Pakistani rulers have been trying to keep the Taliban movement intact, the Taliban is now the most hated people in tribal areas as they have played an active part during the destruction in tribal areas. The Taliban can equally be held responsible for deaths and destruction in tribal areas. According to tribesmen, they will never accept the Taliban as their rulers. They said that if the Taliban are good people then the U.S. must shift them to the United States.

It is ironic that on the one hand Pakistan is the frontline state in the war on terrorism, yet on the other hand the country has remained a breeding ground for terrorists. The presence of Osama bin Laden in Paksitan is clear proof that Pakistani rulers have fully supported terrorism in the world.

Foreign media has still been presenting the Taliban as the leaders of tribal areas despite the that the Taliban can no longer walk freely in the tribal areas. According to a media report, Pakistani and Taliban commanders are locked in talks, trying to heal a damaging rift that has inflamed tensions over whether to pursue peace efforts with the government, insiders say.

After months of relative calm, bomb and suicide attacks are again hitting the northwest, raising fears that terrorists are again on the offensive despite reports late last year that commanders were exploring peace contacts. "The one-point agenda is how to adopt a uniform policy," a Taliban commander told reporters from an undisclosed location on condition of anonymity.

The umbrella Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is a loose confederation of rival commanders. Divisions first came to the fore after founder Baitullah Mehsud was killed in a U.S. drone strike in August 2009. The young and radical Hakimullah Mehsud -- a clan relation to Baitullah -- ultimately won a leadership battle, pushing the TTP closer to al Qaeda and overseeing some of Pakistan's bloodiest gun and suicide attacks yet. Mullah Omar, the Afghan Taliban supreme leader, reportedly asked TTP commanders to stop attacks as his movement explored confidence-building talks with the Americans at the start of a nascent peace process in Afghanistan. The only TTP commander who refused to comply was Hakimullah Mehsud, putting him at odds with his archrival, the older and more measured Waliur Rehman, sources say.

Differences appeared to bubble on Sunday with the sacking of Mehsud's deputy, Maulvi Faqir Muhammad, who is considered close to Rehman, at a TTP meeting.

"Dialogue with Pakistan is a secondary issue. First, we're trying to end our disputes and after that we will decide on holding talks with Pakistan," the Taliban commander told reporters.

"There are serious differences between Hakimullah Mehsud and Waliur Rehman, which everybody wants to end," he added. The TTP leadership has held several meetings with representatives from the Afghan Taliban and Afghanistan's terrorist Haqqani network to try to unite, but commanders are constantly on the move, worried about U.S. drone missiles.

"Several rounds of talks have taken place, but commanders can't sit together in one place for long as they fear drone strikes," another source told reporters. Experts are divided over the significance of Muhammad's sacking, with the government and former officials convinced that the TTP is now weaker than ever -- hit hard by the U.S. drone strikes and by Pakistani military offensives.

"Hakimullah Mehsud has his group with its own weight, but TTP commanders are scattered. Some are in Afghanistan, some in the tribal areas. There is a lack of communication," said Mehmud Shah, a former tribal belt security chief. "There are commanders who aren't listening to Mehsud. The shura (meeting) of some of its leaders is just to show their importance. The TTP structure is broken and they are making efforts to rebuild it and remove difference," he added.

Muhammad has insisted that he initiated peace contacts in Bajaur, his home district and one of seven in the northwestern tribal belt, with the full knowledge of Mehsud's TTP leadership as a "test case." "They told me that first the peace process should take place in Bajaur and then be expanded," he told reporters by telephone.

Malik Sultan Zeb, an elder in the Mamund tribe in Bajaur, said tribesmen were keen to cut a deal with the TTP provided that the terrorists were willing to stop the attacks.

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Muhammad Khurshid, a resident of Bajaur District, tribal areas situated on Pak-Afghan border is journalist by profession. He contributes articles and news stories to various online and print newspapers. His subject matter is terrorism. He is (more...)

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