Pakistan’s PM Says Peace Talks Underway with Pakistani Taliban

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Pakistan’s prime minister, Imran Khan, has said his government is engaged in peace talks with “some groups” of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan or TTP, an alliance of outlawed militant groups waging terrorist attacks in the country.

Khan told TRT World, a Turkish state-owned broadcaster, the talks with the militants are taking place in Afghanistan and the new Taliban rulers of the neighboring country are helping in the process.

“There are different groups which form the Pakistani Taliban or TTP, yes, so we are in talks with some of them on a reconciliation process,” Khan said in a portion of the interview the Turkish network released Friday. The full interview will be aired Saturday.

The Pakistani prime minister said the aim of the discussions with TTP groups is to persuade the militants to lay down their arms “and then we forgive them and they can become normal citizens.”

“The talks are taking place in Afghanistan, so in that sense yes,” Khan noted when asked if the Afghan Taliban were helping in the process.

A spokesman for the ruling Taliban in Kabul, when contacted by VOA for a reaction to Khan’s assertions, said he would try to get one but sent no further response.

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