The Taliban on Monday denied claims circulated on social media that it could join Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in Kashmir and said the policy of the Islamic emirate is very clear about not interfering in the internal affairs of other countries.
“The statement that has been circulated in certain media regarding India does not belong to Islamic emirate,” tweeted Suhail Shaheen, the spokesperson the Taliban political office based in Doha, Qatar.
He said that the “policy of Islamic emirate regarding neighbour states is very obvious that we don’t interfere in the domestic issue of other countries”.
His remarks come after tweets attributed to some Taliban spokespersons claimed that friendship between the group and India is impossible unless the Kashmir issue is resolved.
The deputy of the Qatar based Taliban political office, Mula Abas Stanekzai, had recently alleged that during the last two decades India has only cooperated and kept ties with those who are corrupt and have been put in power by foreigners not elected by the people of Afghanistan. He mentioned that India should cooperate with the Afghan peace process.
The comments by Shaheen denying these claims come even as the United States is keen that New Delhi speaks to Taliban. US Special Representative for Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, who visited Delhi in February, had spoken about this with India.
The spokesperson for the ministry of Afghanistan’s foreign affairs, Gran Hewad, also rejected the statement that India has been playing a negative role in the country for the past 40 years, and said its relations with India are within international frameworks and based on mutual respect.
“India has been a key stakeholder in the peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan. It has been supporting a national peace and reconciliation process which is Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled,” he said.
Diplomats based in New Delhi have been told that Taliban wants to keep a good relationship with all the countries in the region, including India. Sources said the message has been clear that the Taliban stand from day one has been that it will not join the fight against India
But sources pointed out that Taliban remains a diverse group, and many elements in it continue to have deep ties with Pakistan. Recent media reports had also claimed synergy between Taliban and Pakistan-based terror groups, adding that terror training camps were being held for Taliban units and Jaish-e-Mohammed cadre in east Afghanistan.