Why is Pakistan eager to help the Afghan Taliban when they don’t even recognize the border, asks Rabbani

Senator Raza Rabbani, former Senate president and leader of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), on Friday questioned the government’s haste to back the Afghan Taliban, when the latter “didn’t even recognize the border”.

Addressing a session of the Senate, Senator Rabbani asked the foreign minister to take parliament into confidence about a recent incident in which the new rulers in Afghanistan allegedly forbidden Pakistan’s security forces by fencing the border.

Pakistani officials are yet to comment on the incident.

Read also: Taliban stops Pakistani soldiers from fencing the border

Pakistan has fenced most of the 2,600 km border despite protests from Kabul, which has challenged the demarcation of the British-era border that divided families and tribes on either side.

Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman Inayatullah Khawarzami said Taliban forces had prevented Pakistani forces from erecting an “illegal” border fence with the eastern province of Nangarhar on Sunday.

The fencing was the main reason behind the souring of relations between the previous US-backed Afghan governments and Islamabad. The current standoff indicates that the issue remains contentious, despite the Taliban’s close ties to Islamabad.

“They are not ready to recognize the limit, so why are we moving forward?” Questioned Rabbani during the session today.

The PPP senator also expressed concern over reports that the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is regrouping in Afghanistan, “which could potentially fuel terrorism in Pakistan”.

“On what terms is the state negotiating a ceasefire with the banned group?” he questioned.

He further said that the state of Pakistan means the civil and military bureaucracy of Pakistan and not the people sitting in the Parliament.