The latest round of peace talks between Pakistan and TTP have been facilitated by the Afghan Interim Government. Prior to the peace talks, the region remained hostile since August last year and Pakistan’s security forces were attacked multiple times in North and South Waziristan. Based on Pakistan’s concerns over militant factions gaining ground from Afghanistan since the IEA took control, Kabul jumped in to facilitate and mediate the peace talks between the two sides. The talks have been fruitful so far in extending the ceasefire till May 30th, 2022. Prior to this truce agreement, a 10-day ceasefire was extended for five more days at the eve of Eid-ul-Fitr till May 15th, 2022.
The peace talks were reportedly initiated at the end of the last year but the end in hostilities and tensions came about just recently. The tribal Jirgas have also been reported to play part in bringing about peace negotiations. FATA Aman Jirga (a representative body of tribal elders in the FATA region of Pakistan) issued a statement expressing resolve to further the peace efforts and the desire to help translate the temporary ceasefire to a permanent truce arrangement. The terms and conditions of the peace negotiations are not clear yet but one of the demands of the TTP is related to the release of their commanders.
No official statement has emerged from Pakistan’s side yet. However, IEA’s spokesperson, Zabihullah Mujahid, tweeted about talks held at Kabul between the TTP and the government of Pakistan. How much sustainable these peace efforts will be remains to be seen. The sustainability also depends on the willingness of the TTP and similar militant factions to put down arms. The TTP and the likes of it reside and take refuge in the shared mountainous border terrain of the Pak-Afghan region and have long created turmoil and instability in the region. Kabul’s role in these latest round of talks is an expression of its willingness to ensure peace in the region at all costs.