Peace talks between Pakistan and Taliban faltering - official

ISLAMABAD Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:10pm IST

Police and military officials stand near the rubble of a paramilitary building levelled by a suicide bomb attack in Bannu, northwest Pakistan December 24, 2011. REUTERS/Zahid Mahmmad

Police and military officials stand near the rubble of a paramilitary building levelled by a suicide bomb attack in Bannu, northwest Pakistan December 24, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Zahid Mahmmad

Related Topics

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Exploratory peace talks between Pakistan and al Qaeda-linked Taliban insurgents have made little progress, a senior security official told Reuters on Thursday.

The official said the group, seen as the biggest security threat to the strategic U.S. ally, had flatly rejected a demand that it work through tribal elders to reach a deal whereby fighters approach authorities and lay down their arms.

"They felt it would be humiliating," he said. "The talks are not making progress."

A total breakdown in talks, especially if it led to any new waves of Taliban suicide bombings or shootings, would likely make Pakistan's civilian government -- accused of widespread corruption and ineptitude -- even more unpopular.

It would also add pressure on the army in Pakistan, a nuclear-armed, strategic U.S. ally with one of the world's largest militaries.

The government is currently under severe pressure from the Supreme Court and Pakistan's generals, who have ruled the country for more than half of its 64-year history through a series of coups, or from behind the scenes.

Pakistan's Supreme Court on Thursday adjourned a contempt hearing for Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani in a case that could push him from office.

Gilani was in court to explain why he should not be charged with contempt for failing to re-open old corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari. The government maintains Zardari has presidential immunity.

(Reporting by Michael Georgy; Editing by Ed Lane)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Top News

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Diwali Glitter

Diwali Glitter

Gold sales jump about 20 pct for Diwali - trade body  Full Article 

Microsoft Earnings

Microsoft Earnings

Microsoft sales beat Street hopes, cloud profits up.  Full Article 

Canada Shooting

Canada Shooting

Canada Parliament gunman had planned to travel to Syria - police.  Full Article 

New World Bank Rival

New World Bank Rival

Three major nations absent as China launches World Bank rival in Asia  Full Article 

Assault on Pires?

Assault on Pires?

ISL probes allegation of assault on Pires  Full Article 

Ebola Outbreak

Ebola Outbreak

Mali becomes sixth West African nation hit by Ebola.  Full Article 

Climate Deal

Climate Deal

EU strikes compromise to set new climate target.  Full Article 

Kalki Interview

Kalki on Margarita

Kalki on her role in “Margarita, With a Straw”  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage