Taliban dismisses Pakistan defense minister’s remarks as ‘baseless’

The Taliban on Thursday dismissed recent statements by Pakistan’s Defense Minister, Khawaja Asif, concerning terrorist activities in Afghanistan as unfounded, asserting that Afghanistan has been a victim of conflict for four decades.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, quoted by the Taliban-operated broadcaster, criticized Asif’s comments as attempts to “evade responsibility and justify the failures of his country’s government.”

Mujahid said that the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan has been active within Pakistan over the past two decades, framing it as an internal issue for Pakistan.

These exchanges follow statements from Pakistan’s Defense Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif, who described Afghanistan as the “source of terrorism in Pakistan” and called for significant changes to the border management between the two countries. “In view of the increase in terrorist incidents, there is a need for a fundamental change in the border situation,” Asif stated.

He criticized the Taliban for their lack of progress, contrasting it with Pakistan’s efforts to engage them on these security concerns.