Pakistan Army chief backs talks with Taliban


General-Ashfaq-KayaniOctober 12, 2013

ISLAMABAD — Pakistani Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has seconded the government’s plans to hold talks with Taliban militants but warned that force would be used if the extremists continued their attacks.

“The armed forces fully support the process of negotiation to eliminate terrorism,” General Kayani said on Saturday while addressing a military cadets’ parade in Abbotabad.

Terrorism is a big challenge, which is contrary to Islamic teachings, the general said, according to Xinhua.

“The army will fully support the negotiation process but it must be within the constitutional parameters. The national political leadership has adopted the path of dialogue to find out solution,” he said.

He said the whole nation should be united on such an issue, as it will send a positive message.

“We will be happy if a solution is found through dialogue,” General Kayani said.

The army chief rejected the notion that the process of dialogue was initiated after facing defeat in the war against terrorism. He referred to the 2009 operation in Swat in northern Pakistan against the Taliban, which led to the killing of hundreds of militants and the return of many displaced people. –IANS

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