Restive frontier

Wednesday, Jul 06, 2022

Neighbouring Afghanistan occupies the centre stage in Pakistan's foreign policy discourse owing to its unique geographical location. Policymakers have always emphasized a durable peace in Afghanistan, which would further our geostrategic interests as the revival of our economy and long-term stability in the country are partly linked to a peaceful Afghanistan. Lingering agitation and chaos in Afghanistan will compel us to allocate a sizable annual defence budget, putting more pressure on our struggling economy.

In addition, following the US withdrawal, the Indian government is making greater efforts to develop friendly ties with the Taliban government to re-establish its presence in the country. Pakistan needs to be cautious, as India will spare no opportunity to exploit the turmoil in Afghanistan to create instability in Pakistan. Pakistan needs to expand its strategic depth by helping the Taliban government revive the Afghan economy and make long-term peace in the country.

Asad Aziz